By Ian Sherr
Everyone has that photo: The first time they realized their phone’s camera was more than just a toy.
For me, it came not long after the release of the original iPhone in 2007. Laura, my then-girlfriend-now-wife, and I stayed up to buy “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows” on release day before we started off on a journey to New Jersey from DC.
We were doing the typical road trip thing, singing along to the radio, when I held up my phone and snapped a photo of Laura driving along, all smiles and having fun. By today’s standards, the lighting is off, it’s a little blurry and generally lower-quality than I’d like.
But it captures the emotion of that moment perfectly.
That weekend I began taking more candids. Of us walking around town. Of the sunset. Of her triumphant moment finishing the book (759 pages in the US edition!).
Sure, cameras had been on phones for years before Apple’s came along, but they were typically an afterthought. The photos were hard to share or load onto a computer. The iPhone, with its always-there internet connection and easy email, was a revelation.
But more important, the iPhone put a usable camera in my pocket at any time, which meant I could capture small, intimate, everyday moments of life in a way that most of us rarely had.
Fast-forward 10 years and I’ve followed along with every iPhone upgrade. I’m not kidding. Every year. (This time, I’m buying the 256GB version of the iPhone X, with enough space to hold more than 80,000 photos.)
At first, it was because I’m a techie and I like to buy new gadgets, just as other people buy new clothes each season.
But now that I have a toddler, I look at the photos I take as more than mere memories. They’re time capsules that he’ll one day share with his children — and I like to think even their children after that.
When you think about it that way, paying a whopping $1,149 for a high-end phone is a no-brainer.