The story is that an Apple engineer named Gary Powell left his iPhone 4.0 prototype in the Gourmet Haus Staudt in Redwood City, California. It was ‘found’ and delivered (sold) to tech web site Gizmodo.com and they did the only thing nerds know how to do…they took it apart, took pictures and posted everything on their web site. Apple executives must have shit their collective pants after Steve Jobs began work on the iGuillotine for the Apple campus complete with an iBucket for the heads of those responsible.
Apple is famous for their marketing secrecy and they create and culture the hype associated with their new product launches. And then there’s the competition. There is probably a small factory in China building and selling the new iPhone just days after Gizmodo posted their information so I understand Apple’s concern. The iPhone means big business and most of the other manufacturers look to Apple for their next hardware ripoffs. Gizmodo has made it easy for them.
So what did Apple do when they discovered the breach in their security? They initially ignored it then sent Gizmodo a polite letter:
April 19, 2010
210 Elizabeth Street
New York, New York 10012
Dr. Mr Lam
It has come to our attention that Gizmodo is currently in possession of a device that belongs to Apple. This letter constitutes a formal request that you return the device to Apple. Please let me know where to pick up the unit.
Senior Vice President and Counsel
And what did Gizmodo do? They sent Apple a polite letter right back:
Here’s Jason Chen, who has the iPhone. And here’s his address. You two should coordinate a time.
Happy to have you pick this thing up. Was burning a hole in our pockets. Just so you know, we didn’t know this was stolen [as they might have claimed. meaning, real and truly from Apple. It was found, and to be of unproven origin] when we bought it. Now that we definitely know it’s not some knockoff, and it really is Apple’s, I’m happy to see it returned to its rightful owner.
P.S. I hope you take it easy on the kid who lost it. I don’t think he loves anything more than Apple.
So Apple gets it’s phone back and Gizmodo gets 4 trillion hits on its web site. Everyone is happy. Except that some think this is just a publicity stunt cooked up by Apple to promote their new phone. Which would be great for Gary Powell. If he exists.