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Original iPhone Prototype With iPod Click Wheel Surfaces Online (macrumors.com) 35

Famed Apple leaker Sonny Dickson has shared an early prototype of the original iPhone, with a collection of images and a video that provides a glimpse into one version of the iPhone that Apple created and tested before ending up with the first iteration of the device. Mac Rumors reports: The prototype includes some similar features to the first generation iPhone, like an aluminum chassis, multi-touch compatible screen, 2G connectivity and Wi-Fi, but its entire user interface is taken directly from the click wheel system of Apple's original iPod line. Called "Acorn OS," the prototype software includes an on-screen click wheel on the bottom half of the screen and a menu system on the top half, and the two are bisected by a bar with rewind, menu, play/pause, and fast-forward buttons. On the menu are options such as "Favorites," "SMS," "Music," "Settings," and "Recents," and it's navigated by circling around the click wheel to go up and down, with a center press confirming an action, just like on the iPod. Dickson references Apple's patent for a "multi-functional hand-held device," filed and published in 2006, as proof that such a prototype did exist at one point and could potentially have been an alternate version of the iPhone. In one of the patent's drawings, a click wheel can be seen as a possible input method for the proposed device. The patent's abstract describes a product with "at most only a few physical buttons, keys, or switches so that its display size can be substantially increased."
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Original iPhone Prototype With iPod Click Wheel Surfaces Online

Comments Filter:
  • This looks like something Tim Cook would have released.
  • Did this iPhone have a jack to plug your headphone into?

  • Screw that (Score:3, Funny)

    by Billly Gates ( 198444 ) on Friday January 06, 2017 @06:56PM (#53620711) Journal

    I am waiting for the MacBook wheel! [youtu.be]

  • Time until some Chinese company will launch an exact replica in 10, 9, 8, ....

    And if done right, nobody will steal it, since they'll think it's a piece of decade old tech.

  • I really miss the scrolly wheel on my old Pilot and the very short-lived AOL Communicator beeper.

  • The story I had always heard from friends in Taipei's Tech Sector was that Apple had long subcontracted the iPod production to Taiwan (Hon Hoi Precision Tech Group, owned by Terry Gou, aka Foxconn) and that the display geeks in Taiwan - who had been trying to improve touch screens for ATM machines moving from CRT to LCD - introduced it in the model. According to my pals (now retired) Apple realized how important the multi device implications could be and hired an insider from the Taiwan shop to move to a

  • ISTR just before the iPhone announcement, people were joking about the new "Apple Phone" having an iPod-style click wheel for rotary dialing.

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