Apple's iPad, iPhone: 10 Factors That Made Them Popular

News Analysis: Apple has sold more than 100 million iPhones. The iPad hit 15 million units in sales last year. It seems Apple is doing something right with its mobile devices. It's time to take a look at the factors that make Apple's mobile products so successful.

If there is one thing that can't be debated in the technology industry, it's that Apple's iPad and the company's iPhone are wildly successful. In fact, Apple said earlier this year that it has sold over 100 million iPhones since the smartphone's launch in 2007. In 2010 alone, people purchased 15 million iPad units around the world. All these sales have combined to help Apple generate billions of dollars from its mobile devices.

But how did the iPad and iPhone become so successful? When they're compared with some of the better smartphones and tablets on the market, it's tough to find many differentiating factors that would make the iPhone and iPad such special devices. Yet, they have enjoyed more success than any other single smartphone or tablet. And the chances of that changing anytime soon are slim.

With that in mind, it might be a good time toexamine the reasons why the Pad and iPhone have caught on so well with consumers and enterprise customers alike.

Read on to find out what makes the iPad and iPhone so popular:

1. It's Apple

If nothing else, the success of Apple's iPhone and iPad is due to the company that developed them. Over the past decade, Apple has become one of the most trusted and celebrated companies in the tech space, due mainly to its ability to deliver unique and aesthetically pleasing devices.The iPad and iPhone are no different. The products have become extremely popular around the world because of Apple's continued ability to give customers what they want year after year.

2. Steve Jobs is an icon to some

Though debate can rage over whether or not Steve Jobs is really the best CEO in the technology industry, there's no questioning that he has legions of fans who will buy any product that he promotes. Even more important for Apple, Jobs has the unique ability to captivate audiences, attract media outlets and deliver a level of hype for his products that no other CEO has been able to match. By using all those qualities, and relying upon Apple's hard-core fans, Jobs helped lead the successes that the iPhone and iPad have become.

3. The advent of touch screens

When the iPhone first launched, many who followed the technology industry knew that touch screens were the future. However, few believed that any company in 2007 would be able to make them work as well as consumers would demand. But Apple did just that with the iPhone. And it brought its technology to the iPad to further cement its position in the touch-screen space. Now, if a smartphone lacks a touch screen, it's considered obsolete. Consumers simply expect them. Considering Apple was the first company to deliver a suitable touch screen, it's reaping the benefits of that.

4. Who needs physical keyboards?

When Apple released its iPhone in 2007, it also made it clear that physical keyboards weren't necessarily the future in the mobile market. Steve Jobs and Company viewed physical keys as a relic of the past that wouldn't fall in line with Apple's "cool" branding. So Jobs took a gamble and turned his back on the physical keyboard. He did it again with the iPad last year. By doing so, Apple was able to appeal to consumers who wanted a next-gen product that didn't subscribe to outdated beliefs. Now, with more than 100 million iPhones and 15 million iPads sold later, it's clear that doing so was a smart move on Apple's part.

Don Reisinger

Don Reisinger

Don Reisinger is a longtime freelance contributor to several technology and business publications. Over his career, Don has written about everything from geek-friendly gadgetry to issues of privacy...