The first smartphone was launched in 1994 by IBM but it only worked on a limited network that spanned just a few US states. Within a few years Nokia, Ericsson, Palm and Blackberry got in on the act. Whilst this new technology was impressive, it was expensive and technically limited.
Then in 2007 everything changed with the launch of the iPhone (yes it’s only been 10 years since the first iPhone appeared on the market!). It was the first smartphone to use finger input as the main method of control instead of a stylus, keyboard or keypad, there were a wide variety of apps available with more and more being released literally every day and it even looked cool.
The iPhone sparked a dramatic shift in the way the internet is accessed. In October 2016, just less than 10 years from the iPhones launch, mobile devices overtook desktop computers as the preferred method of going online with 51.3% of global internet usage via a mobile device compared 47.3% via a desktop.
Of that 51.3% just less than 5% is via tablets with the rest on smartphones. As sales of smartphones continue to grow whilst desktop computer sales continue to fall, it is estimated that by the end of 2018 smartphones internet access alone will significantly outstrip desktop access.