Apple's First Phone Designs

Discussion in 'iOS Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, Jul 17, 2007.

  1. MacRumors
    Expand Collapse
    macrumors bot

    MacRumors

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2001
    #1
    [​IMG]

    The son of Hartmut Esslinger, a designer for Apple in the early 80s posted a collection of never before published images of Apple Designs from the early 80s including several Apple phone designs.


    [​IMG]


    This design resembles Apple's Apple //c design.

    Article Link
     
  2. siurpeeman
    Expand Collapse
    macrumors 603

    siurpeeman

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2006
    Location:
    the OC
    #2
    it makes me want apple to incorporate phone capabilities in all macs. just plug in a phone line (in addition to support for voip) and dial away.
     
  3. arn
    Expand Collapse
    macrumors god

    arn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2001
  4. GoCubsGo
    Expand Collapse
    macrumors Nehalem

    GoCubsGo

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2005
    #4
    Looks like one of those pda cell phone padfolios that you can fold up and put in your briefcase.
    Cute
     
  5. nostaws
    Expand Collapse
    macrumors 6502

    nostaws

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2006
    #5
    some cool looking stuff. Interesting to see. Jobs was at apple then. In the images, I saw the apple phone, and a cube computer design. Both which jobs revisited upon returning. I wonder how much of that stuff is representative of Steve Jobs, and if any of that is still floating around in his head for product ideas.

    I assume that triangle thing was a mouse, it actually looked pretty comfortable in the hand for being so angular.
     
  6. JPyre
    Expand Collapse
    macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2005
    Location:
    Pistolvania
    #6
    "I know that hand. It was in the fall 1973 Bulova watch catalog." - Derrick Zoolander


    Interesting stuff, I wonder if the bill collectors would still charge a fee for check by phone. This also brought back to mind the AT&T video phones, what ever happened to them?
     
  7. LimeiBook86
    Expand Collapse
    macrumors 604

    LimeiBook86

    Joined:
    May 4, 2002
    Location:
    Go Vegan
    #7
    Wow some of these are so cool! :D This Macintosh design almost looks like an iMac.

    Plus I'm sure this would of ended up worse than the puck-mouse, hehe :) Great story!
     
  8. juststranded
    Expand Collapse
    macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2006
    #8
    Heck, that thing still looks better than a lot of PC's being sold. I'd buy it.
     
  9. Scottgfx
    Expand Collapse
    macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2002
    Location:
    Fort Myers, FL
    #9
    Perhaps it was because of the breakup of AT&T in the early 1980's, but it seems everyone was working on phones. As evidenced by this...

    http://www.atarimuseum.com/ataritel/index.html

    Atari actually had some good industrial design back in the day. Too bad they got caught up in the price war with Commodore.
     
  10. Lixivial
    Expand Collapse
    macrumors 6502a

    Lixivial

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2005
    Location:
    Between cats, dogs and wanderlust.
    #10
    Well I think the Cube was probably derived from his NeXT origins, personally. Plus it would appear he's always been/still is fascinated with cube designs (NeXTCube, G4 Cube, Fifth Avenue Apple Store). But I, too, have always wondered if he trawled through Apple's past when he returned in '97.

    I mean, it's quite amazing how a lot of those designs reflect current and recent Apple products. As LimeiBook86 pointed out, this looks like the G3 iMac.. This looks like the iBook/MacBook, or then-future Apple laptops. Leopard's Stacks dates from around 1994, and I'm sure there are a many more unutilized prototypes/ideas that have since been implemented that we don't know about. And if the naming on the images is accurate, it would seem certain names even came from that foregone era as well.

    Interesting stuff, indeed.
     
  11. fixyourthinking
    Expand Collapse
    macrumors 6502a

    fixyourthinking

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2002
    Location:
    Greenville SC
    #11
    Forgot the Apple Paladin

    Apple actually shipped 20 or so (for beta testing) of the The Paladin which was a Phone/Fax/Computer/Scanner/Copier/Printer. It was based on the PowerBook Duo. I owned one in 2002 and sold it a few months later on eBay. I'm surprised this was left out of the mix. Good article though.



    [​IMG]
     
  12. iMeowbot
    Expand Collapse
    macrumors G3

    iMeowbot

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2003
    #12
    The images linked in the OP are from frog design. That project was from after their relationship with Apple had fallen apart.

    Kinda sorta. frog did the cube, so there is a relationship of a kind to the sketches and mockups seen here.
     
  13. mainstreetmark
    Expand Collapse
    macrumors 68020

    mainstreetmark

    Joined:
    May 7, 2003
    Location:
    Saint Augustine, FL
    #13
    http://www.ojophone.com/homepage
     
  14. maler
    Expand Collapse
    macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2002
    Location:
    Praha, Czech republic
    #15
    Seems to me like pictures from Apple Design book, so not "unpublished". But i must check at home.
     
  15. Yankees 4 Life
    Expand Collapse
    macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2007
    Location:
    College Station, Tx
    #16
    haha so true, i would definently buy that thing. throw away my crappy landline fone!
     
  16. thejoshu
    Expand Collapse
    macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2003
    #17
    Many of these (all? I'd have to take a look) were published in Paul Kunkel's excellent coffee-table book AppleDesign. Good luck finding a copy.
     
  17. branjosef
    Expand Collapse
    macrumors 6502a

    branjosef

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2007
    Location:
    1.222.333.456
  18. kdarling
    Expand Collapse
    macrumors demi-god

    kdarling

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2007
    Location:
    Device engineer 30+ yrs, touchscreens 24+.
    #19
    So where is Apple and their home phone now? We need one.

    Verizon has stepped in with their new Hub using VOIP, with 800x480 touchscreen and neat little widgets for family use:

    [​IMG]

    I think this will be a year of home convergence. I have an HP Touchsmart in the kitchen, which is used by everyone for surfing, weather reports, TV Guide, notes and especially video Skyping. It can DVR too, with a cable attached. Also has voice control. It just needs a landline phone connection as well.

    Nokia's been working for years on integrating smartphones with home entertainment systems and so forth.

    Should be fun. Can't wait. Apple needs to be in this arena, and not just with Apple TV.
     
  19. branjosef
    Expand Collapse
    macrumors 6502a

    branjosef

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2007
    Location:
    1.222.333.456
  20. ingenious
    Expand Collapse
    macrumors 65832

    ingenious

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2004
    Location:
    Virginia, United States (Kansan in exile)
    #21
    you mean like a 56k modem.....??
     
  21. WPB2
    Expand Collapse
    macrumors 6502a

    WPB2

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2008
    Location:
    Southeast, LA
    #22
    Dude what are you talking about. You want to use you mac as a telephone (PSDN). That is a step backward. How about Skype, google talk, or the many other VOIP services out there. There are way too many to name.
     
  22. Martin Finch
    Expand Collapse
    macrumors member

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2009
    #23
    I'm loving the retro looking images. Ah, wish I was born in the 70's :)

    -M
     
  23. chr1s60
    Expand Collapse
    macrumors 68000

    chr1s60

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2007
    Location:
    California
    #24
    It would be interesting to see the impact that these earlier Apple phones would have had on Apple's entry to the cell phone market.
     
  24. betaboy78
    Expand Collapse
    macrumors regular

    betaboy78

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2006
    #25
    That made me laugh!
     

Share This Page