Happy 5th birthday, iPhone!

Your memories of the world's greatest smartphone

The Apple iPhone turns five years old today. Since it was launched on 29 June 2007, Apple's vastly popular smartphone has turned the telecoms industry upside down - not to mention the worlds of gaming and software development.

To celebrate the iPhone's birthday, we asked readers for their favourite memories of the celebrated device: the first iPhone they ever bought, what drew them to the smartphone, the ways in which the iPhone has improved their day-to-day lives and their favourite anecdotes about life-saving apps and rib-tickling auto-correct screw-ups.

(See also our potted history of the iPhone, from 29 June 2007 to today.)

The iPhone at 5: a beautiful device

Many respondents spoke of their love of the various iPhone designs and their uncomplicated beauty. David Wraith wrote: "I splashed out on an iPhone 3G on release day. Still recall marvelling at its beauty. Coined my own phrase 'you're never alone with an iPhone'."

"I'm still using mine from 2007 right now!" wrote Paul A Roberts. "Real iPhones have a metal back!"

Simon Jary was initially embarrassed by his device, thinking its showiness would make him look like a hardcore, try-hard geek. "I got the original iPhone on the day it hit the UK. Yes, I queued up! Funny to think now but for months I was almost embarrassed to use it in public as people stared, and looked down on me as some sort of gadget freak/show-off. Nowadays people look at you funny if you use an old Nokia..."

"The best thing about the iPhone 4 is the screen," wrote Jim Martin. "That Retina display is still awesome."

Will Head, a former colleague of ours, sent us a message that simply read "The first iPhone Apple designed was made entirely out of cheese. True fact." We would like to point out that this is neither true nor a fact.

The iPhone at 5: the user-friendly smartphone

"The best thing about it remains the consumer simple end-to-end experience: right out of the box you plug it in and away you go," argued Matt Egan. "But that's also the worst thing - you're either an iOS user or you're not. Why can't you buy an iPhone app that also works on Android or Windows phone? Why can't I take iTunes purchases with me when I change to a different platform?"

The iPhone at 5: the smartphone that does everything you need

"I bought the iPhone 3G first," added Egan. "It was the first smartphone I wanted (the iPhone, not specifically the 3G) because it did the stuff I wanted a phone to do. You could surf the web, email, listen to music, and it seemed straightforward, unlike older 'smartphones' that required a stylus, the dexterity to use a tiny hardware keyboard, or a degree in Java to use."

The iPhone at 5: the life-saving smartphone

"For someone with zero sense of direction," admitted James Walker, "'Maps' has definitely been a bit of a life saver."

The iPhone at 5: the irritating smartphone

Not everyone was entirely positive about the iPhone.

Pietro Montanarella was an initial convert but has since turned to the dark side: Android. "I typed 'just a sec' and the iPhone put 'just a sex'. When I bought my first iPhone (iPhone 4) I was the happiest person ever. Now I'm typing this on a Samsung Galaxy Nexus."

Jim Martin reflected that his iPhone 4 "still hasn't learned my name, so signs off emails as Kim or Jin but never Jim."

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David Price

Macworld U.K.
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