The twist was the addition of smart-phone applications, complete with an Apps Store and developer input.
Application developers loved the 70/30 revenue split that goes their way for their iPhone work, and the overall effect was the creation of a new iPhone-enthusiast crowd of developers and users.
Heavy rotations of stylish but utilitarian TV commercials from TBWA's Media Arts Lab, Los Angeles, kept the smartphone front and center and laid out easy-to-use benefits. Phil Schiller, senior VP-worldwide product marketing, is one of the few Apple execs who regularly speak at conferences or in interviews.
The iPhone 3G gambit seems to be paying off already. Apple reported sales of 6.9 million iPhones in its most recent quarter, in which the 3G hit shelves.