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This Is Apple's Next iPhone 492

An anonymous reader writes "There has been some speculation about it. Not anymore: 'This is Apple's next iPhone. It was found lost in a bar in Redwood City, camouflaged to look like an iPhone 3GS. We got it. We disassembled it. It's the real thing, and here are all the details.' Judging by Gizmodo's reaction, it looks like a winner."
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This Is Apple's Next iPhone

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  • by Rogerborg ( 306625 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @11:19AM (#31896560) Homepage

    And they "got" it from whom? Directly from Larry Lightfingers, or via Frankie the Fence?

    J'accuse: they're dealing in stolen property, and they know it, or should know it. But ethics be damned, because ZOMG IPHOAAAN!!!!11! Right?

  • Re:iPhone - NOT (Score:5, Insightful)

    by radicalskeptic ( 644346 ) <tritone&gmail,com> on Monday April 19, 2010 @11:20AM (#31896586)
    If you'd actually read the article, you'd know why they consider it to be a next gen Apple phone (many parts inside branded APPLE, in a case designed to make it look like a 3G iPhone, behaves just like an iPhone when you connect it to a Mac, uses the Mac proprietary dock connector, etc, etc). Are you saying that everyone at Engadget had been fooled, or are you saying they are playing a late April Fools joke on us? Frankly I don't think either is very likely.
  • by Bullfish ( 858648 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @11:21AM (#31896594)
    Whether this is truly a new iPhone or not, Gizmodo's opinion doesn't count for much. They would adore Job's lunch kit if they found it in an alley
  • Still too big (Score:3, Insightful)

    by BadAnalogyGuy ( 945258 ) <> on Monday April 19, 2010 @11:24AM (#31896640)

    The phone is still too big for those of us who want to use it for jogging. There are plenty of apps related to jogging, not to mention the whole "portable music player" feature. But the phone is just too bulky to take jogging.

    Something a quarter of the size would be great. Keep the resolution, but shrink the whole thing by half in both dimensions and you'll keep perfect compatibility with existing apps.

    I'm sad to see that this looks like more of the same old same old. It'll be another iPhone that I have to pass up because it just isn't what I need.

  • by affenhund ( 1371117 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @11:26AM (#31896668)
    Embarrassing, how the media got played to do advertisement for them. Goodbye, journalism.
  • by martas ( 1439879 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @11:28AM (#31896678)
    either that, or this is yet another "accidental" leak by apple.
  • Re:FAIL! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by discord5 ( 798235 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @11:35AM (#31896786)

    With both engadget and Gizmodo getting their hands on the "next iPhone" in different bars in different cities, it is difficult to believe that somebody actually lost the phones. Either both engadget and Gizmodo got fooled or this is more a marketing campaign than lost phones. I would bet on latter.

    "Oh hi you techreporters. I'll just be finishing my drink and then conveniently leaving my NEW FREAKIN' IPHONE 4 *cough* here for someone totally random to find."

    What? It could happen...

  • Re:FAIL! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by moosesocks ( 264553 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @11:42AM (#31896884) Homepage

    Too much about this just doesn't add up.

    1) Engadget and Gizmodo both stole phones!?
    2) I won't deny that hype-building is something of a pastime for Apple, but this is distinctly not their way of doing things.
    3) People walk around with camouflaged, non-functional engineering samples?
    4) The design reflects current trends, but the seams are so, so, so incredibly un-apple-like. Also, would a metallic phone with an internal antenna even work?

  • by Viol8 ( 599362 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @11:42AM (#31896892) Homepage

    Come on , you barely get proper journalism in proper gadget magazines , just lots of hyperbole, poorly researched waffle and laughable tests. What makes you think you'll get it on a website full of wannabe gadget mag staff writers?

  • iSick of it (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Nemyst ( 1383049 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @11:45AM (#31896912) Homepage
    Can we please cut back on iCrap related stuff already? We've had more iPad news in the last weeks than Linux news in the last months. Will we get flooded by iPhone stuff now? Is this "News for Geeks" or "News for Hip Teenagers"? I don't give a shit about the iPhone, the iPad or whatever else Jobs can pull out his arse. It's alright to speak about it; I don't mind that. But this is bordering in spamming, sometimes two articles on the same damn thing per DAY! Are we going to get a news item every time someone farts at Apple?

    I'm sorry, but there's just so much stuff that can be covered that splashing /. with iPhone/iPad news feels like wasted bandwidth.
  • Re:Reward (Score:4, Insightful)

    by DIplomatic ( 1759914 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @11:50AM (#31896972) Journal

    From TFA: > So I called around, and I now believe this is an actual unit from Apple -- a unit Apple is very interested in getting back. If it's so important for Apple to get this phone back, I wonder why there's no reward...

    How do you read the sentence a unit Apple is very interested in getting back. and NOT think Apple offered Gizmodo something in return for the phone? Information, maybe, if not direct money. I'm aware the sentence didn't contain the word "reward" but you can read between the lines.

  • Re:FAIL! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Altus ( 1034 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @11:54AM (#31897034) Homepage

    According the TFA the phone was functional before being remotely wiped by Apple. Certainly people do walk around with camouflaged, functional engineering samples during the testing cycle for new phones. I know employees at Nokia are often given pre-release hardware to try out both in the building (early testing) and outside the building (later in testing)

    It really does sound like this is a real unit. It may have been leaked intentionally but that doesn't make it less relevant.

    The only thing that makes me suspicious is that I cant find any report on what chip it is using. I would expect them to say something about that, even if all they said was that the processor didn't have any markings on it. I would think that would be one of the first things they would look at.

  • Re:FAIL! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Abreu ( 173023 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @12:04PM (#31897170)

    Considering how Gizmodo always squees over every little thing Apple makes, it seems specially suspicious

  • Re:iSick of it (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Duradin ( 1261418 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @12:04PM (#31897176)

    But we need all the Apple articles so that we can get our daily quota of Apple hating in.

    Hating Apple is the hip thing to do these days and just think if /. wasn't seen hating on Apple for a hour or two what would happen to its geek cred.

  • by bonch ( 38532 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @12:08PM (#31897236)

    Yeah, there wasn't already expectation after their iPhone 4 OS event or anything. What a silly post. This is obviously a stolen test unit.

  • by Wingsy ( 761354 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @12:15PM (#31897390)
    If Apple (or someone employed by Apple) actually lost their prototype iPhone, why didn't they use the FindMyPhone feature to locate it and go get it back?
  • Re:FAIL! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by LWATCDR ( 28044 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @12:16PM (#31897412) Homepage Journal

    If this wasn't intentional then someone is looking for a new job.
    And b.
    If you find a lost cell phone shouldn't you really try and return it? Since it is an iPhone one could probably take it to an Apple or AT&T store and they could read the sim and contact the owner.
    Just saying that finding a cell phone and then keeping it seems a lot like stealing to me.

  • by Have Blue ( 616 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @12:17PM (#31897420) Homepage
    Did you miss the runup to the iPad announcement? For months, the entire tech world was abuzz with rumors about the Apple tablet based solely on leaks, guesses, unofficial sources, and so on. Apple did not say a single word until late January and it was already one of the most anticipated electronic products in history. They are absolute masters at this because they've been cultivating it for years.
  • Re:FAIL! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Mister Whirly ( 964219 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @12:20PM (#31897464) Homepage
    Apple sure pulled the wool over your eyes. What, do you think after "accidentally" letting the phone fall into the hands of the press, Apple was going to act like it wanted it to happen? No, because that give them just enough plausible deniability so that folks like you will make statements like -

    It doesn't sounds like marketing to me.

    This is classic textbook Apple advertising of a new product. Next some specs will be leaked and posted online, and after sufficient time that anybody is interested can see them, Apple will start issuing takedown notices. Are all of you really not going to remember that Apple has done stuff like this in the past??

    "Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me dozens of times, I'm an Apple customer."

  • Re:iSick of it (Score:5, Insightful)

    by bonch ( 38532 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @12:21PM (#31897478)

    We've had more iPad news in the last weeks than Linux news in the last months., we haven't. In fact, there's barely been any iPad news. Meanwhile, there was a story about Linux not attracting young developers, an analysis of Linux's shared kernel memory, GPL compliance checking in embedded software, how Android's Linux changes will make it back to the main source tree, how the WePad tablet will use Linux, etc.

    I get that Apple competitors post here and are trying to drum up some lame anti-Apple sentiment, but lying will get you nowhere.

  • Re:iPhone - NOT (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Sockatume ( 732728 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @12:23PM (#31897528)

    Only can a true fanboy turn the phrase "like a Braun product from the 70s" into a compliment. Because we all want to show off our new iEpilators.

    Only someone with zero knowledge of design history would make such a statement. Braun's industrial design has been an explicit influence on Jonathan Ive's work at Apple.

  • Re:FAIL! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by lennier1 ( 264730 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @12:27PM (#31897568)

    Might be time to start taking your meds again.

  • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus ( 1223518 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @12:43PM (#31897876) Journal
    In this case, it goes well beyond the "ethical vs. pragmatic" debate of the $500 wallet. Unless it is a very elaborate setup, $500 in bills is functionally untraceable. Your choice comes down merely to whether you would rather "do the right thing" or "have $500".

    In this case, an Apple prototype cellphone is all kinds of traceable. It'll have an IMEI burned in and(since it was remotely disabled) has probably left a trail of tower contacts in the recent past. Now Gizmodo has put up a note on their web page saying "Yeah, we have it. Also we took it apart.". Receiving and harboring stolen goods is illegal in basically every state, and can be a federal crime for items $5k or greater that cross state lines. It is totally plausible that a prototype is worth more than five thousand. Depending on the numbers in which they are being produced, it might have even cost that much to manufacture and, being rare and coveted, is worth rather more.

    I honestly don't know what Gizmodo is thinking. This isn't one of those "Oh, Apple's mean lawyers are hounding a bunch of harmless kids and their rumor sites again" situations. This is a "Gizmodo staffers have just published a public admission of having committed a state and/or federal crime(and not one of those minimally and largely civilly enforced ones, like DMCA violations and DRM circumvention tools)". One or more of them could easily go to prison.
  • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus ( 1223518 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @12:52PM (#31898066) Journal
    I'd say that that is the invisible hand doing its thing.

    Ok, so you are a person of somewhat dubious character who "finds" cellphones in bars(whether you did in fact "find" and made no effort to return, or whether you make a profession of "finding" is unclear; but immaterial). Now, you happen to "find" a rather curious device, a clearly Apple-looking cellphone that doesn't publicly exist. What do you do with it?

    To an ordinary fence, it is worth fuck all. Because it is a prototype, it is "hot" and probably being watched more closely than usual. Because it is a new model, none of the grey market hacking/unlocking/re-IMEIing/etc. tricks used to run iPhones in various dubiously licit secondary markets are going to work.

    To a gadget site, it is worth serious pageviews, plus a fair bit of fanboy wank.

    It seems pretty obvious which one of these potential customers you would get in touch with.
  • Re:iPhone - NOT (Score:4, Insightful)

    by hazydave ( 96747 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @01:12PM (#31898446)

    Of course, the primary reason the iPad used the microSIM was supposedly just to that iPhone users couldn't just pop their iPhone SIMs into the device, but had to sign up for another $30 per month to use the iPad in cell modem. That's defeated if the new device supports the microSIM.

  • by node 3 ( 115640 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @01:16PM (#31898508)

    Apple deliberately leak information all the time. This is a well known "secret". Just do a google search for "How apple leak information".

    Yes, but they never, ever leak hardware.

    Android has been getting a lot of press recently with all the new android devices coming out. It's very conceivable this was done deliberately as a "leak" as long as there was a promise to return the device.

    No, it's not conceivable. It's possible in that technically, the laws of physics allows it, but it's not reasonably possible given how Steve Jobs does things. If Apple wanted to piss on the Android fire, they'd just throw a preview event and show off the phone.

    Do really think that these guys would actually pull this thing apart if they didn't have permission?

    Do you think they wouldn't pull it apart if Apple didn't say they could? Do you think they even asked permission in the first place?

    I'm sure such an act is potentially illegal otherwise.

    Yes, it potentially is. Not the disassembly, nor the posting of photos, but the possession of likely stolen goods. The press does tend to get leeway in such matters, and pressing criminal charges against Giz reporters is far beyond a line Apple is likely to cross (before it's brought up, Apple's civil lawsuits where years ago, and were civil, not criminal. It's one thing to fight against leaks in a financial manner. It's something else entirely to attempt to send someone to prison).

  • by amicusNYCL ( 1538833 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @01:16PM (#31898518)

    The fact that Apple is apparently not pursuing Gizmodo over this doesn't indicate to me that the product is not genuine, it indicates to me that Apple was complicit in Gizmodo getting this device. It was on purpose, Apple handed the thing straight to them (in a bar in Redwood City, apparently).

  • Re:FAIL! (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Civil_Disobedient ( 261825 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @01:18PM (#31898574)

    You'd have to remember it, since the phrase has absolutely no legal basis and would subsequently be absent from any published legal rulings. Like, ever.

  • Re:iPhone - NOT (Score:4, Insightful)

    by WrongSizeGlass ( 838941 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @01:22PM (#31898626)

    If you'd actually read the article, you'd know why they consider it to be a next gen Apple phone ...

    I RTFA yesterday and the what the article says doesn't matter. The picture of the back of the device - the only part that displays the Apple logo or any other Apple info - is not the same device as the other photos. They're not claiming the found two separate new iPhones.

  • Re:FAIL! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Gloume ( 581815 ) <<moc.liamg> <ta> <emuolg>> on Monday April 19, 2010 @01:22PM (#31898642)
    They don't favor 4:3. Current iPhone is 480x320, aspect ratio 1.5. The resolution I've seen suggested for this device is 960x640, which is also AR 1.5.
  • by Weaselmancer ( 533834 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @01:41PM (#31899010)

    They had the stupid thing taken apart, but the article doesn't mention the CPU used or the amount of ram/flash on it.

    Both are trivial to find unless the manufacturer took a file and removed the markings from the chips.

  • Re:FAIL! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by icebike ( 68054 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @01:55PM (#31899270)

    Plus 1 to everything you said.

    This just gets Apple back to par with Nexus One, and HTC Droid Incredible, with ugly unimaginative styling.

    Until someone reveals the chipset inside we still have no idea if we are stuck with those horrible infineon chips which are the root of iPhone evil.

    Apple is clearly no longer the leader. This phone is their admission of that fact. They hope packaging will save them. Look forward to multiple colors. That seems to be the "innovation" of choice when Apple sees no other avenue for improvement.

  • Re:FAIL! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymusing ( 1450747 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @02:17PM (#31899544)

    Apple is clearly no longer the leader. This phone is their admission of that fact. They hope packaging will save them.

    Apple was never the leader in features or chipsets. However, they are the leaders in packaging, marketing, and UI (the latter being disputable by some folks, especially on Slashdot). And those things translate into mindshare and sales.

  • Re:FAIL! (Score:1, Insightful)

    by MogNuts ( 97512 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @03:57PM (#31901244)

    You're exactly right. So as I posted elsewhere today to shed some insight on this ridiculous Apple circle-jerking, let's end the Apple myth. I see all these planted and biased reviews, and I can't take it. They're just garbage and they're feeding the Apple image, which frankly isn't true. I recently used both phones for a month--an IPhone and an Adnroid one (not 2 days like most reviewers). Let me precede that both are pretty darn good. But the IPhone isn't better. Here are my findings as to what is better about each over the other:


    1. Appearance of "smoothness." Notice I said "appearance." They're both just as quick, it's just that the IPhone has better visual animations in the interim to distract you to make you think that's its immediate. It's really not as quick as you think between actions.

    2. Touch screen works the way you think. This feature isn't better, only different. Once you get used to either phone, it doesn't matter. With the IPhone, when you press something, adjusts to where you really think you're pointing, whereas in Android, it's where your finger actually rests and makes contact with the capacitive screen.


    1. Probably the most amazing and useful feature ever in a phone--auto synchronization between Gmail, Google calendar, contacts, and photos. Yes blah blah Mobile Me. Well Google is free--Apple is $100/yr. And please, the functionality and features of Gmail and Google calendar absolutely crap on the lame excuse of the Apple offerings. Don't even try to argue this one.

    2. Free turn-by-turn GPS. Killer feature here. Saves you like $15/mo for navigation. That's big. And I could never justify 15/mo when I could navigate myself with Mapquest. Well now that I use it, it's amazing, and I still can't justify the 15/mo for it, but I can justify getting an Android phone over Apple for it.

    3. Free tethering. This feature is huge. You're paying for a data plan either way, but at least with Android you don't need to shell out another 60 per month for a wireless cell service just because Apple says "Because I say so."

    4. Higher resolution. Makes text to much more readable and the difference in image quality is like night and day between the two.

    5. The ability to use it as a mass storage device, with a removable Micro SD card. Droid has 16gb worth to store.

    6. User-replaceable battery. No $60 rip-off price and driving to an Apple store to get a new battery installed. And tell me this, one day your IPhone will freeze. Not if, but when (all software does). Do you want to be out a few days just to gain use of your phone when it won't restart via software? When with Android, all you have to do is pull the battery out? This one is a scary demerit for Apple.

    7. I can install what I want. I'm not told I can't use tethering. Killer features then the IPhone doesn't have: tethering and VoIP (and I mean on a cell network, NOT over wifi--wifi is useless if you're out of your house, and NO I'm not going to travel to Starbucks to use VoIP, no matter how plentiful they are).

    8. Finally, the last game changer and killer feature Android has over the competition: voice to text translation, in all fields (especially text messages). I've never seen a voice-to-text program since the early 90s that actually worked well. I can't believe it, but Google's does. I barely even use the keyboard when sending texts anymore.

    And to address all the "b-b-but !", no, Jailbreaking is NOT a solution. It just isn't. The average person doesn't know how to do it, the average person technically inclined who actually has a job can't be bothered, and I'm not voiding my warranty or preventing myself from getting updates for it.

    As you can see, the baseline of each phone is pretty equal. But the only features that the IPhone excels at are weak. Androids superior features are pretty much game changers. I only hope that at least some people read this to know how the products REALLY compare.

    Go ahead now, mod me down into oblivion.

  • by ottothecow ( 600101 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @04:10PM (#31901426) Homepage
    And when you sell it to gizmodo, they can protect you as a confidential source. If some court tries to force them to reveal, everyone will be up in arms.

    If you sell it to a fence...

  • by nine-times ( 778537 ) <> on Monday April 19, 2010 @04:34PM (#31901746) Homepage

    It's better to lose hardware that can only be looked at than lose the hardware and the software

    Especially if the hardware wasn't final, and the phone was "in the wild" because they were testing new software features. FindMyPhone only works if the phone is on and connected, same as the remote wipe.

    We all know that Apple has controlled leaks when they want to have an unofficial press release, but I agree that (assuming this really is a prototype for the next iPhone) this probably wasn't leaked on purpose. They've never been known to drop hardware like this, and they could have just as easly "leaked" photographs of the case. I bet that, even if this was a prototype, this isn't the final casing.

  • Re:FAIL! (Score:2, Insightful)

    by osu-neko ( 2604 ) on Monday April 19, 2010 @05:32PM (#31902488)

    I've been to many bars with many cellphones and I've never lost one, ...

    News flash: you are not the center of the universe. What has happened to you in your life does not form the basis for any kind of logical argument about what is or isn't normal in the world. To argue in this fashion indicates a fundamental (probably unconscious) assumption about your place in the universe that is essentially delusional, elevating your place in it to a greater importance than it actually has.

Evolution is a million line computer program falling into place by accident.