ROKR and iPhone: What's the connection?

in iPod + iTunes + AppleTV edited January 2014
Thinking about the iPhone lately got me thinking about the Motorola ROKR, Apple's very first venture into an iTunes-friendly cellular phone. It also was released through then-Cingular and kind of fizzled.

Wikipedia has the original ROKR's release date as Sept. 7, 2005. Steve Jobs has said that Apple's been working on the iPhone for "two years", meaning that they started working on the iPhone a little bit prior to the ROKR's release.

What's the connection? What did Apple learn from the ROKR and what influence did it have on the iPhone?

I recall that, after the ROKR didn't explode into the market, many said Apple learned a lesson from it and would never make their own cell phone. It seems that exactly the opposite is true. So what gives?


  • Reply 1 of 3
    brussellbrussell Posts: 9,812member
    I think the lesson was that to do it right, they had to do it themselves.
  • Reply 2 of 3
    jupiteronejupiterone Posts: 1,564member
    Originally Posted by BRussell View Post

    I think the lesson was that to do it right, they had to do it themselves.

    Yes, in the Keynote where Jobs introduced the iPhone, he quoted some guy that said something like, "If you're serious about software, you have to make your own hardware." Maybe Jobs got fed up with the ROKR and said "F*ck it, we'll make our own phone!"
  • Reply 3 of 3
    tednditedndi Posts: 1,921member
    More likely, apple partners with a cell phone manufacturer and gains the expertise in making cell phones. Moto got itunes on its phone and it sucked. Apple takes the knowledge it gleaned from Moto and partners with Cingular/ATT and does it right.
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