The press were penned off just out of range of the main building, at the Steve Jobs Theater, the 1,000-seat venue with a commanding view of the spaceship. A quick review: This place is just what you’d imagine an Apple-designed campus would look like. Think of the aesthetics of an Apple Store — lots of wood and glass, everything in muted tans and greys, all signage in white-on-black Apple Sans type — set on an otherwise barren landscape.
It is, unsurprisingly, very pretty, but its beauty comes with a deliberate touch of fright. Nothing here is to human scale, and the overall impression is one of being overwhelmed by Apple’s sheer might.
— Farhad Manjoo
The iPhone still dominates after 10 years
Since Apple introduced the iPhone in 2007, the company has sold more than 1.2 billion of the devices, making it one of the best-selling gadgets of all time. And sales show no real signs of slowing. How has it managed that?
Several factors have played major roles. The iPhones have strong security, for example, and Apple offers a strong technical support system, including the Genius Bar at Apple retail stores. But there is also Apple’s tight ecosystem — the iPhone works well with other Apple products — and, over time, Apple has gained people’s trust.
The device has also changed how we live, cementing an always-connected way of life. It certainly wasn’t perfect from the start, he says, but over time “the iPhone wasn’t just a shiny bauble. It was useful. It could mimic just about any other gadget you had, from your Game Boy to your flashlight. And apps could do things no other gadgets could do.”
What’s the future of the smartphone?
For the last decade, smartphones have gotten thinner and faster. But the gadgets are still evolving in more interesting ways. As we wrote two weeks ago, some of the latest new tricks involve the cameras and sensors.
New cameras are starting to enable face scanning, allowing people to unlock their phone just by looking at it. There remain sizable limitations to some of this technology, but some aspects seem primed to enter the mainstream.
In addition, the new hardware will enhance augmented reality, in which digital objects can be placed on real-life objects. Apple, among other technology giants, have been bullish on augmented reality — which relies on advanced camera technology and is aided by motion sensors.