Apple co-founder and CEO Steve Jobs passed away from pancreatic cancer 11 years ago today. He is probably most remembered for the introduction of the iPhone on January 9th, 2007. In a performance that was flawless for both Jobs and the iPhone, Steve displayed the device with the confidence of a man who knew that he was showing off a device that was about to change the world.
Jobs was only 56 when he passed and ironically, just the day before he died, Apple unveiled the iPhone 4S. This was the first iPhone to feature Siri and while some said that the “S” in the phone’s name stood for Siri, others said (a few days after the unveiling) that it was a tribute to Steve Jobs. Actually, neither one was right. As it did with the iPhone 3GS, Apple was merely adding the letter to the name of the previous year’s iPhone with the same design as the new model.
Steve Jobs, seen here unveiling the iPhone in 2007, passed away 11 years ago today
This email said, “Hi Mr. Jobs, I love my new iPhone 4 (nice work) but when I put my hands on the steel bands I lose all reception. It appears to be a common issue. Any plans to fix this? Thanks , Aram.” Jobs wrote back, “Just avoid holding it in that way.” Somehow that response became a direct quote from Steve saying, “You’re holding it wrong.” Eventually, Apple sent out free rubber bumpers that shielded the antenna bands from interference from your hands.
Before the iPhone, Jobs had made a triumphant return to Apple in 1997. He had hired Pepsi executive John Sculley to be CEO of Apple in 1983. Sculley then fired Jobs who worked on Pixar (later bought by Disney) and a company called Next while away from Apple. When Apple purchased Next, it gave Jobs a way back into Apple and he took over the CEO role (although it was supposed to be on an interim basis).
Jobs released a series of products that might never be seen again. First came the iMac computer with its colorful translucent plastic. Then came the iPod, Apple’s MP3 player that held an incredible 1,000 songs while featuring a battery that ran for 10 hours. The iPhone was next (’nuff said) followed by the iPad.