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Old Mar 11, 2013, 09:51 AM   #1
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Early 2005 iPhone Prototype Looked More Like a Thick iPad Mini




Ars Technica shares several photos of an early functional prototype of the iPhone from 2005, revealing a device closer in size to a thick iPad mini than an iPhone.

The photos were sent to Ars by an anonymous former Apple employee who worked on the project in the early 2000s. The prototype is 5x7 inches in size, and nearly two inches thick - though much of the thickness was to accommodate features like serial and Ethernet ports installed purely to use the device in a development environment.
Quote:
Apple watchers have seen all manner of iPhone prototypes pop up on eBay, in court documents, and in leaked photos. But most were either close approximations of the first iPhone that was released in 2007 or of later models.

What we don't often get to see is early Apple prototypes, those from way before the iPhone started to look like a phone-like object. That's why we were excited to receive photos showing an in-house version of the iPhone from early 2005. The images to Ars through a former Apple employee who worked on various Apple hardware projects in the early 2000s and was thus exposed to some of the earliest versions of the iPhone.
Ars Technica points out that the Samsung ARM chip used is "a distant relative of the chip the first iPhone ended up using, just older and slower."


Article Link: Early 2005 iPhone Prototype Looked More Like a Thick iPad Mini
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Old Mar 11, 2013, 09:53 AM   #2
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Wow! It's so thin.
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Old Mar 11, 2013, 09:54 AM   #3
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that's a table, not a tablet
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Old Mar 11, 2013, 09:55 AM   #4
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Dainty little item that would fit well in the pocket, and come in handy for slicing meat, if necessary.
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Old Mar 11, 2013, 09:55 AM   #5
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Serial port... nice! Amazing how prototypes use available technology and then morph into what we have today.

Last edited by nep61; Mar 11, 2013 at 11:43 AM. Reason: Serial, not VGA... oooops.
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Old Mar 11, 2013, 09:56 AM   #6
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lol isn't this more like an iPad prototype?
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Old Mar 11, 2013, 09:56 AM   #7
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Wow, that is an Atari VCS joystick port right?
Why did they scrap that feature?
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Old Mar 11, 2013, 09:56 AM   #8
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As usual, Android copies Apple! Samsung Note is a ripoff of the original iPhone!

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Old Mar 11, 2013, 09:57 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by SmoMo View Post
Wow, that is an Atari VCS joystick port right?
Why did they scrap that feature?
In the PC world... that is called a serial port.
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Old Mar 11, 2013, 09:57 AM   #10
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Are you sure this isn't a pic of a Galaxy S 4? Look at those USB/VGA beauties!
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Old Mar 11, 2013, 09:59 AM   #11
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Thank god the iPhone was released at a later date when everything was a bit smaller.

Also, I wonder what the earlier oses were like
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Old Mar 11, 2013, 10:00 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nep61 View Post
VGA port... nice! Amazing how prototypes use available technology and then morph into what we have today.
That's a serial port, not VGA.
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Old Mar 11, 2013, 10:01 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lucasfer899 View Post
Thank god the iPhone was released at a later date when everything was a bit smaller.

Also, I wonder what the earlier oses were like
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Old Mar 11, 2013, 10:01 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by needfx View Post
that's a table, not a tablet
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Old Mar 11, 2013, 10:01 AM   #15
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Is this the device that sat on a shelve until Steve picked it up and thought of a phone ? Which later became the iPad ?

Or is this after he thought of the iPhone ?
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Old Mar 11, 2013, 10:01 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nep61 View Post
VGA port... nice! Amazing how prototypes use available technology and then morph into what we have today.
NOT VGA, serial port!

-------

Seems like the very first prototype.
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Old Mar 11, 2013, 10:01 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lucasfer899 View Post
I wonder what the earlier oses were like
Is it bootable so we can find out?
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Old Mar 11, 2013, 10:02 AM   #18
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No offense to some, as I like Apple products...

But had Apple released THAT, I'm sure SOME people would still be calling it the best thing since sliced bread.
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Old Mar 11, 2013, 10:03 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Drunken Master View Post
seems like the magnetic pull is already upon your person
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Old Mar 11, 2013, 10:04 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by justperry View Post
NOT VGA, serial port!

-------

Seems like the very first prototype.
It seriously amazes me the amount of people who consider themselves "tech savvy" that cannot distinguish the difference.
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Old Mar 11, 2013, 10:05 AM   #21
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This beast beats all of Samsung's gigantic phones!
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Old Mar 11, 2013, 10:06 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Peace View Post
Is this the device that sat on a shelve until Steve picked it up and thought of a phone ? Which later became the iPad ?

Or is this after he thought of the iPhone ?
Typically a prototype will look nothing like the final product.

Any embedded system starts life out in a similar fashion. Phones, tablets, etc. Even though that board looks nothing like an iPhone, at it's heart they are both the same (or in this case, very close to the original).

Look at the Beagleboard:

http://beagleboard.org/

Or the Pandaboard:

http://pandaboard.org/

They are both ARM development boards meant to speed the process of developing some sort of embedded system that is targeting the OMAP3/OMAP4 series of processors. The above pictures are simply Apple's version of these boards.
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Old Mar 11, 2013, 10:08 AM   #23
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Very interesting! Love to see how the iPhone has developed throughout the development phases.

Would have loved to see some of the old OS prototypes it ran.
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Old Mar 11, 2013, 10:08 AM   #24
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I don't know how well a phone would work tied into an Ethernet connection. You'd have to have some seriously long cords available to be 'mobile'.
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Old Mar 11, 2013, 10:09 AM   #25
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That really could be anything. Nothing to suggest its an Apple product.
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