updated 01:10 pm EDT, Thu November 1, 2007
iPhone wins Time award
Apple's iPhone has been selected as TIME's Invention of the Year, the magazine has announced. Five reasons are cited: on a superficial level, the iPhone is said to be extremely attractive, taking account of design touches that many technology companies do not consider, but which make a device more interesting to paying customers as well as easier to use. Secondly, the phone's touchscreen interface is said to be the first to genuinely combine a touchscreen with natural motions, such as flicking through album covers or "stretching" photos.
TIME further credits the iPhone as a true "handheld, walk-around computer," making it a platform rather than a limited collection of applications, although having a mobile Google Maps is cited as particular advantage. The magazine also acknowledges that it is not yet a fully-developed platform, this only expected after the release of an SDK in February.
Finally, the iPhone is expected to only become cheaper and more functional in later versions, while it may already be fostering incentives for cellular networks -- including AT&T -- to liberate their restrictions on phone makers, who have previously had to constrain features such as Internet use to fit with existing subscription plans.
The TIME award is the second best-of laurel from a major publication within a week, the phone having previously received a Gadget of the Year title from the British magazine Stuff.