The new iPhone is going to go down in tech history, not because of its innovation, but because of the incredible things that have happened to its prototypes.
Last summer a worker at Apple’s iPhone factory in China lost a prototype, then apparently killed himself after his employer — Foxconn — searched his apartment.
Today’s story of the day is that another prototype — this one apparently a near final, working model — was lost at a bar in Redwood City, Calif., and ended up in the hands of gadget blog Gizmodo. A screen grab of the page:
The new phone looks more like the iPad, with a squared and beveled metal border. Gizmodo says it has a bigger battery and smaller (but sharper) screen than the iPhone 3GS. It also has a better camera and a flash. It speculated that it’s going on sale sometime in 2010.
Apple made it known through blogger John Gruber that it “considers this unit stolen, not lost.”
If Apple puts pressure on Gizmodo, maybe the blog should remind Apple about this story it ran last year — about Apple refusing to return a stolen iPhone to a woman in New York.
UPDATE: Gizmodo revealed the name of poor the Apple engineer who lost the phone – a 27-year-old who apparently hasn’t been fired yet. The guy left it on a bar stool and the guy sitting next to him picked it up. This opportunistic tipster apparently received $5,000 from Gizmodo for the device, even after figuring out who owned it by a Facebook profile it displayed.