If you're keen to discover how the iPhone came to be — and all the juicy, behind-the-scenes details of what went into Apple's monumental undertaking — then you owe it to yourself to check out the latest piece appearing in The New York Times Magazine.
In it, Wired contributing editor Fred Vogelstein paints a fascinating picture of some of the crazier parts of the original iPhone's development, including much of the stress the various Apple teams were feeling to get Apple's to-be-flagship product off the ground and operational.
Better still, the piece isn't just a one-shot item; it's actually a snippet from Vogelstein's to-be-published book, "Dogfight: How Apple and Google Went to War and Started a Revolution," if you're keen on getting even more gory details about the mobile slugfest between the market's platform leaders.
As always, the late Apple CEO Steve Jobs makes a commanding appearance within the iPhone's final stages — Vogelstein's excerpt starts out with the former Apple Overlord working on final rehearsals for the iPhone's big 2007 Macworld debut. And, in true Apple fashion, things aren't going swimmingly.
"Grignon had been part of the iPhone rehearsal team at Apple and later at the presentation site in San Francisco's Moscone Center. He had rarely seen Jobs make it all the way through his 90-minute show without a glitch. Jobs had been practicing for five days, yet even on the last day of rehearsals the iPhone was still randomly dropping calls, losing its Internet connection, freezing or simply shutting down," Vogelstein writes, referring to Andy Grignon — senior engineer at Apple at the time.
In typical Jobs fashion, the former CEO has a few choice explanations for those who are seemingly letting him down at the time, including: "You are [expletive] up my company" and "If we fail, it will be because of you," to name a few.
And that's just the presentation. Some of the more fascinating parts of Vogelstein's eight-page piece involve the sheer amount of security that Apple dumped into the announcement itself, as well as the iPhone's overall development over at Apple HQ.
So much so, note Vogelstein, that employees that were tapped to work on the iPhone project allegedly had to sign two agreements: One non-disclosure agreement that they wouldn't dare mention what the project is that they were being asked to work on, prior to being informed, and a second agreement after-the-fact to confirm that they wouldn't say anything, now that they knew what it was.
"Steve didn't want to hire anyone from outside of Apple to work on the user interface, but he told me I could hire anyone in the company," said Apple SVP Scott Forstall, in last year's Apple v. Samsung trial.
"So I'd bring them into my office, sit them down and tell them: 'You are a superstar in your current role. I have another project that I want you to consider. I can't tell you what it is. All I can say is that you will have to give up nights and weekends and that you will work harder than you have ever worked in your life.'"
Image Credit: Flickr (Ricky Romero)