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Six years ago, iPhone unveil changed lives, technology (VIDEO)

Wednesday - 1/9/2013, 4:19pm  ET

iphonecomposite2.jpg
A 2007 iPhone is seen on the left and an iPhone 5 (released in 2012) is seen on the right. (David Becker/Getty Images, AP)

Neal Augenstein, wtop.com

WASHINGTON - Six years ago today, Apple Chairman Steve Jobs introduced the first iPhone.

The announcement of the first generation iPhone 2 on Jan. 9, 2007 at the company's Macworld expo, was hardly a secret.

During Jobs' keynote, he said Apple would be unveiling an iPod, cellphone, and "Internet communicator." Then it was revealed they would be contained in a single device.

What is surprising is how the mobile device has become integral to users' lives, and revolutionized the phone and technology landscape.

"It's changed the landscape for everyone," says Ken Colburn, co-host of the Data Doctors show that airs on WTOP.

"To call the iPhone a game changer is a great understatement," says Larry Magid, CBS technology consultant and CNET technology analyst.

When Jobs made his introduction, smartphone users had been limited to products with keys and buttons.

"At the time we were heralding the Blackberry and the Palm Treo as the primary smartphone leaders. When we look back at those devices, it looks pretty archaic," says Colburn.

The iPhone touch screen led users to replace typing with swipes.

Other technology companies have introduced touchscreen products.

"Nobody has been able to create the fervor for a product like Apple has, with Steve Jobs' vision," says Colburn. Jobs died in 2011.

"It completely changed not only the way people developed cellphones, but ultimately the way people developed personal computers. The iPhone led to the the iPad, which led to Windows 8 and the widespread adoption of touch computing," says Magid.

Colburn says in addition to its technology, Apple's marketing separates it from competitors.

"No other company can get people to line up around the building, waiting to get their hands on the latest and the greatest," Colburn says.

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(Copyright 2013 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)