Pixar’s new HQ.
iOS 1.0 offered no support for native, 3rd party apps. Apple tried to fill that gap by promoting web apps, but in 2007 HTML apps weren’t ready to carry that load for the platform. Some (including yours truly) even argued that it may not even be technically correct to call the iPhone a smartphone, since it didn’t offer a platform to develop against beyond the web browser.
Steve Jobs once make clear he didn’t see the iPhone being a smartphone. I can see his point. He wanted all people to have one and in those days the term “smartphone” scare non-geeks away.
Note that the Motorola RAZR was the most succesfull phone of the time and it wasn’t a smartphone.
In every user interface study we’ve ever done […], [we found] it’s pretty easy to learn how to use these things ‘til you hit the file system and then the learning curve goes vertical. So you ask yourself, why is the file system the face of the OS? Wouldn’t it be better if there was a better way to find stuff?
Now, e-mail, there’s always been a better way to find stuff. You don’t keep your e-mail on your file system, right? The app manages it. And that was the breakthrough, as an example, in iTunes. You don’t keep your music in the file system, that would be crazy. You keep it in this app that knows about music and knows how to find things in lots of different ways. Same with photos: we’ve got an app that knows all about photos. And these apps manage their own file storage. […]