The Verge reports that Apple has revealed yet more rare prototype iPhone photos today with the aim of disproving recent reports that said that Apple’s early iPhone design was based on a Sony phone design. The new photos show the prototype known as “Purple,” which looks very much like the iPhone, and predates the “Jony” prototype reported on last week as being influenced by Sony’s phone designs. “Purple” was conceived back in August 2005, prior to the “Jony”, and according to Apple’s court documents, the Sony-ish elements of the design were “an ‘enjoyable’ side project” from the prototype’s designer, Shin Nishibori, and simply a little extra flourish on top of the iPhone design that Apple had already come up with. Apple also contends that the photos of Purple show that it was in no way inspired by Sony designs, and was in fact the true precursor to the iPhone that would be eventually released in 2006.
Apple says it didn't copy iPhone from Sony, releases 'Purple' prototype to prove it | The Verge