The Apple Co-founder wanted to eliminate the SIM slot from the first iPhone model because “he didn’t want another hole in the device”.
Several years before the arrival of eSIM, Steve Jobs wished the first iPhone did not have a SIM card slot.
The story was revealed by former iPod team vice president Tony Fadell, who was recently interviewed by reporter Joanna Stern at a Computer History Museum special event.
According to Fadell, during the initial development of the first iPhone model, Steve Jobs was against the idea of having a SIM card slot in the device due to his design preferences. Specifically, Jobs told the engineers and designers that he didn’t want another hole in the iPhone.
The Apple co-founder used Verizon as an example to claim that an iPhone without a SIM card slot would have been possible as the carrier was known for its CDMA rather than GSM network. CDMA phones do not require a SIM card as they are directly connected to the operator’s network.
Fadell reveals he had to use market data to convince Steve Jobs that using CDMA instead of GSM for the iPhone wouldn’t work as the technology had very little adoption.
The former vice president also told stories about the development of the iPod and how the idea of opening the Apple Stores was fundamental to Apple’s business model and, above all, to make the iPod known.
Fadell explained that, at Apple, they believed the best people to sell a product were the ones who created it. At the same time, the company needed a space dedicated to telling the story of the products and showing people why they needed to buy these products.
“This is why Apple Retail is so powerful.”
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