The legal wrangling between Samsung and Apple has revealed a pretty cool artifact: an original design model iPad prototype. Also very interesting is that it hails from around 2002-2004. The first retail iPad didn’t release until 2010, so Apple had been working on it for quite a while.
As told in Walter Isaacson’s Steve Jobs biography, the iPad actually came before the iPhone… and lead directly to it’s creation.
“I asked our people about it, and six months later they came back with this amazing display,” Jobs said. “And I have it to one of our really brilliant UI guys. He got scrolling working and some other things, and I thought, ‘My God, we can build a phone with this.’ So we put the tablet aside, and we went to work on the iPhone.”
Though it’s thicker, and has a smaller bezel, and lacks a home button, it’s very easy to look at these images and say “Yep, that’s an iPad.”
An excerpt from Apple head designer Jonathan Ive’s testimony:
My recollection of first seeing it is very hazy, but it was, I’m guessing, sometime between 2002 and 2004, some but it was I remember seeing this and perhaps models similar to this when we were first exploring tablet designs that ultimately became the iPad.
Pretty cool, no?
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