Recent documents containing photographs of an early Apple tablet prototype have surfaced online. According to NetworkWorld.com, the photos were leaked from documents Apple provided in its ongoing patent battle with Samsung to prove the iPad has been in development since the early 2000s.
The prototype featured is noticeably thicker than the iPad model that was launched in 2010 and does not feature a home button. However, the bezel is the same and the Apple logo is still emblazoned on the back.
Although the iPhone launched before the iPad in 2007, Steve Jobs confessed at a 2010 All Things D conference that the concept of a tablet came years before the iPhone.
“I’ll tell you a secret — it began with the tablet,” Jobs announced. “I had this idea about having a glass display, a multitouch display you could type on with your fingers. I asked our people about it. And six months later, they came back with this amazing display. And I gave it to one of our really brilliant UI guys. He got [rubber band] 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.”