From its speculative beginnings as a far-out rumour in fanboy-ville through to its long-awaited release on Friday, no other mobile has captured the imagination of gadgeteers quite like the iPhone. But how did it begin? Take our hand and we will show you…1955 Mama Jobs has a baby. Calls him Steve.1976 – 1999 Steve Jobs starts Apple computers. Dreams up, amongst other things, a mobile phone that can do anything. He tells no one.1999 Apple acquires the domain name www.iphone.org, which today still redirects to the company’s homepage.2002 Rumours of an Apple-branded PDA or phone increase, although Steve Jobs refuses to divulge any information one way or another, saying “We don’t usually discuss products that we haven’t announced”. The first “leaked” pictures appear on the web, most bear no resemblance to the finished article.2002/2003 Apple applies for a trademark on the name iPhone in various countries.March 2006 An application to the European Patent Office by Apple reveals it has submitted an application for “database programs for handheld devices”.
November 2006 Stuff.tv reports Apple has placed an order with a Taiwan factory to produce 12 million handsets.December 2006 The Industry speculates on the now infamous, but still not real, device, and includes a frighteningly accurate mock-up. Rumours grow of an imminent announcement…December 2006 The iPhone is announced! But it’s a VoIP handset from Cisco. Were all the Apple rumours a planet-wide joke?9 January 2007 Steve Jobs puts millions of fanboys out of their misery by finally announcing the iPhone at Macworld. It surpasses most expectations. Stuff.tv manages to get hands-on with the new touchscreen beauty and declares it the Coolest Gadget Ever.10 January Cisco announces its intention to sue Apple. So, it does. Apple stands its ground. The World watches.15 January As iPhone fever grows, a thoroughly pointless, but nonetheless cool, downloadable origami version appears on the web.21 February Cisco and Apple settle their difference. The two companies agree to share the word ‘iPhone’ and work together, holding hands and singing, on other techie stuff. Awww. 25 May 2007 The first iPhone clone appears in China – beat that, cardboard iPhone!4 June 2007 The US release date of the iPhone is announced. It’s 29 June. No definite word on a UK date, other than late 2007.
8 June 2007 An eagle-eyed Stuff.tv forum user spots a mystery twelfth app on a press image of the iPhone. More speculation abounds.11 June 2007 Fresh iPhone info bubbles up. Namely, its version of Safari will support web 2.0 apps and Google docs. Apple will also let developers write their own web apps to run on the browser. The first third-party apps appear in a heartbeat. How cool is that?14 June 2007 It’s announced the iPhone will be contract-only in the UK. No word yet as to which network it will appear on. 19 June 2007 Apple announces upgrades to the iPhone, including a glass screen and added talk-time, ten days before launch.20 June 2007 YouTube is announced as the iPhone’s mystery twelfth app.29 June 2007 It's the date the world has been waiting for (or the US at any rate). The iPhone finally hits the stores. And we manage to get our mitts on one!23 August 2007 Hackers unlock the iPhone from the AT&T network And using a programme nicknamed Jailbreak, hackers enable the iPhone to take personalised desktop images, wallpapers and ringtones.5 September 2007 Apple announced the iPhone sans phone function - the iPod touch.18 September 2007 Apple announces operator 02 will get the iPhone, exclusively, and will launch on November 9 in the UK for £270. Brits start tapping their foot.October 2007 Jailbreak evolves into an easy-to-download application accessed via the iPhone itself. Just one click and it’s an open phone.25 October 2007 iPhone is named the Coolest Gadget in the world by Stuff at the Stuff Cool list awards. It also picks up the reader’s choice award.5 November 2007 Apple announces iPhone will launch in the UK with new firmware! It’s version 1.1.2, blocking use of Jailbreak – allegedly.9 Nov 2007 iPhone to land in the UK on the O2 network