You have some valid points, however i still think if the iphone hadn't of included multi capacitive touch (a cutting edge feature at the time, maybe seen on one or two devices previously) it wouldn't of been anywhere near as successful as it was. If they had used the ipod scroll wheel, resistive touch screen (like my old pocketpc), or buttons; then the phone could have been the same quality, but would lack the premium feel.
Different countries have different ideas about premium though. If you look at American cars they concentrated on bigger engines and nicer seats, whereas Europe focused on suspension, weight placement and drive systems. If you asked either continent whether they made premium cars, both would say yes; personally i think the European cars are a bit more premium, mostly due to the extra tech (but that's just my opinion).