The One Device by Brian Merchant
The Secret History of the iPhone

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A wide-ranging history like Merchant’s is the start of an answer. But to get a real reckoning of human cost versus price, we might need to turn to moral philosophers.
-Guardian

Synopsis

NATIONAL BESTSELLER
"The One Device is a tour de force, with a fast-paced edge and heaps of analytical insight." -Ashlee Vance, New York Times bestselling author of Elon Musk
"A stunning book. You will never look at your iPhone the same way again." -Dan Lyons, New York Times bestselling author of Disrupted
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 cell 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 One Infinite Loop to 19th 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 firsthand look at how the cutting-edge tech that makes the world work-touch screens, motion trackers, and even AI-made their way into our pockets.
The One Device is a roadmap 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.
 

About Brian Merchant

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Brian Merchant is the senior editor of Motherboard, VICE's science and technology outlet, the founder/editor of Terraform, its online fiction outlet, and his work has appeared in the Guardian, Slate, VICE Magazine, Salon, Fast Company, Discovery, GOOD, Paste, Grist, and beyond.
 
Published June 20, 2017 by Little, Brown and Company. 400 pages
Genres: Computers & Technology, Arts & Photography, Science & Math, History, Education & Reference. Non-fiction
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Critic reviews for The One Device
All: 3 | Positive: 2 | Negative: 1

Kirkus

Good
on May 15 2017

Merchant’s story takes sometimes-unexpected turns, but in the end, he paints a thoughtful portrait of how a piece of reigning technology became ubiquitous in just a decade, for good and ill.

Read Full Review of The One Device: The Secret Hi... | See more reviews from Kirkus

NY Times

Below average
Reviewed by Lev Grossman on Jun 19 2017

The iPhone is designed for maximum efficiency and compactness. “The One Device” isn’t. The three chapters on the development of the iPhone are the heart of the book, but there’s some filler too.

Read Full Review of The One Device: The Secret Hi... | See more reviews from NY Times

Guardian

Above average
Reviewed by Jacob Mikanowski on Jun 29 2017

A wide-ranging history like Merchant’s is the start of an answer. But to get a real reckoning of human cost versus price, we might need to turn to moral philosophers.

Read Full Review of The One Device: The Secret Hi... | See more reviews from Guardian

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