Apple's curved glass and aluminium iPhone rejected over cost and comfort issues

Apple v Samsung court filings reveal why Apple abandoned early iPhone prototypes

Apple's earliest iPhone prototypes were unearthed during the trial between Apple and Samsung last week, and further investigation into older court filings from the case have revealed some of the reasons behind Apple's decisions for the design of its smartphone.

Networkworld's Yoni Heisler reports that Samsung's attorney has questioned former Industrial Design Creative Lead at Apple, Douglas Satzger, who is now the Vice President of Industrial Design at Intel. Satzger worked on the original iPhone, the iPhone 3G and the iPhone 3GS.

Satzger told Samsung's attorney that Apple's industrial design team had a strong interest in developing an iPhone with shaped glass on both the front and the back of the device.

The reason Apple decided against this design for the iPhone was because it would be too expensive to make. "The technology in shaping the glass, the cost relative to shaping the glass at the time, and some of the design features of this specific shape were not liked," Satzger explained.

Apple also considered an iPhone that looks much like the early iPod mini, as seen in the photograph below.

"My recollection of it was that to get the extruded aluminium design that was applied to the iPod to work for the iPhone, there were too many added features to allow it to be comfortable and to work properly" Satzger explained when asked what the problem with the design was that made Apple decide against it. "If you put an iPod up to your ear, the sharp edges, because of the processes, aren't comfortable, and you can't get antennas to work properly in a fully enclosed metal jacket. So each one of those things needed to apply other features that started," he said.

See also: Everything we know about the iPhone 5 launch date, specifications, features

Related:

Trial with Samsung reveals Apple's 7in iPad vision, 'Purple Project' Apple, Samsung wage battle both in and out of court Samsung: Apple pushed expert witnesses to change their minds Apple v Samsung: day by day account of patent trial Apple v Samsung highlights insanity of tech patents Judge rejects Apple's punishment against Samsung

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Ashleigh Allsopp

Macworld U.K.
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Pope

Dynabook Portégé X30L-G

Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.

Tom Sellers

MSI P65

This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang

MSI GT76

It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?