The ‘ultra-rare’ iPhone 2G prototype was designed for engineers
APPLE FANBOIS with deep pockets are salivating over a first-generation iPhone prototype that’s up for sale on eBay.
According to the seller – who has previously flogged, er, Jurassic World merch balaclavas – the “ultra-rare” device is a pre-production iPhone 2G prototype and runs an early version of iOS, dubbed ‘Earthbound’ that was specifically designed for engineers testing the hardware functions.
The iPhone, codenamed ‘Project Purple, is from 2006 and was “hand-made in Cupertino, California”, according to the listing. Because of this, it has a few differences from the iPhone that was eventually released by Apple in 2007. For starters, it’s heavier at 144.5g, compared to the 135g of the iPhone 2G, it packs different internal components, including battery and WiFi modules, and has no FCC etching on the back.
The prototype is used and has “some signs of cosmetic wear”, but is apparently fully operational with working Bluetooth.
At the time of writing, it’s currently going for $33,000 (around £25,000). However, there’s still more than seven days left and the listing has more than 1,1000 deep-pocketed iFans keeping an eye on it, so the bidding likely has a long way to go yet.
“For sale is a genuine iPhone 1st generation DVT Prototype. This is the ultimate collectable item, with over 1 billion iPhones sold (making it the biggest selling product in human history), this is an extremely rare opportunity to own one of the first few prototypes of the original iPhone,” the listing reads.
The seller, in a bid to get fanbois hot under the collar, adds that the prototype is “EXTREMELY RARE”, noting that “only a few are known to exist.”
While a bidding war has already begun, Apple has successfully had several iPhone prototypes removed from eBay in the past, so it’s as yet unclear if this one will survive. µ