TechGear: E-mail From the Future: Remember the iPhone?

Mike Elgan looks back at all the hype -- from the iWorld of 2022

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Sent: Wednesday, June 28, 2022, 2:32 p.m.


Subject: Re: Remember the iPhone?

Wow, I haven't heard the word iPhone in years!

That "iPhone's 15th Anniversary" article you sent me from was hilarious -- I can't believe some die-hard holdouts are "keepin' the dream alive" and still using those old, clunky phones. (And how did that one dude figure out how to use his iPhone as a Linux Web server? Amazing!)

I can't believe it's been 15 years since iPhone came out. I still remember the launch like it was yesterday. The first version was totally lame, but people were calling it the "Jesus phone," waiting in line for days to buy it and talking about it like it was this amazing thing. (Remember -- this was way before the holographic display version came out.)

Remember what a disaster the launch was? It took AT&T for freakin' ever to activate all those phones (that's what it used to be called before Apple changed it to iT&T). That one store had, like, 1,000 people waiting for six hours, then they told them all to go home and come back the next day.

People paid a fortune for those phones; then when the first good version came out just in time for Christmas, everyone was so ticked off. ...

I didn't even buy one until the iPhone Metro came out in -- what? -- 2009, something like that. That was a pretty cool phone and probably the second phone ever with a fold-out display. I remember thinking that a quarter inch was superthin for a phone back then. Wow.

How long did the iPhone exist? I remember thinking the craze was over when President Schwarzenegger started carrying one. By then, everyone in Silicon Valley and Shanghai was already using an Apple EarPhone.

Hey, what was the name of that Japanese company Apple bought that launched it into the stratosphere? Sunny or Sonny or something like that? I think that's how Apple first became a movie studio -- it's hard to believe they started out as a computer company.

Anyway, thanks for the laugh -- and the walk down memory lane. (Just for fun, I'm going to go check iBay and see if anyone is still selling them.)

-- Mike

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The new, $29.99 Belkin Washable Mouse is watertight, so you can put it under the faucet and scrub it with dishwashing soap. It's a really simple, one-button mouse.

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The hype over the Apple iPhone is so high that no product could possibly live up to it. After years of rumors and months of anticipation, the iPhone goes on sale tomorrow -- at last.

Mike Elgan writes about technology and global tech culture. Contact Mike at or his blog, "The Raw Feed."