The One Device

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Penguin Random House, Jun 22, 2017 - Smartphones - 416 pages
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SHORTLISTED FOR THE FT & MCKINSEY BUSINESS BOOK OF THE YEAR AWARD 2017

The secret history of the invention that changed everything
and became the most profitable product in the world.

Odds are that as you read this, an iPhone is within reach. But before Steve Jobs introduced us to 'the one device', as he called it, a mobile phone was merely what you used to make calls on the go.

How did the iPhone transform our world and turn Apple into the most valuable company ever? Veteran technology journalist Brian Merchant reveals the inside story you won't hear from Cupertino - based on his exclusive interviews with the engineers, inventors and developers who guided every stage of the iPhone's creation.

This deep dive takes you from inside 1 Infinite Loop to nineteenth-century France to WWII America, from the driest place on earth to a Kenyan pit of toxic e-waste, and even deep inside Shenzhen's notorious 'suicide factories'. It's a first-hand look at how the cutting-edge tech that makes the world work - touch screens, motion trackers and even AI - made its way into our pockets.

The One Device is a road map for design and engineering genius, an anthropology of the modern age and an unprecedented view into one of the most secretive companies in history. This is the untold account, ten years in the making, of the device that changed everything.

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I really enjoyed this book. There's a lot about what went on inside of Apple while the iPhone was being created that the author brings forward for the first time. But beyond that, there's simply a lot about technology and globalization that his research reveals. I learned a lot.

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About the author (2017)

Brian Merchant is an editor at Motherboard, VICE's science and technology outlet, the founder/editor of its online fiction outlet Terraform, and his work has appeared in the Guardian, Slate, VICE Magazine, Salon, FastCompany, Discovery, GOOD, Paste and Grist as well as on the front pages of Reddit, Digg and Slashdot.

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