Early Prototype of the 1st Gen iPad Spotted in the Wild

BY Chethan Rao

Published 15 May 2017

The world is waiting for Apple’s next major iPad refresh, expected to be held during the WWDC early next month. However, a new leak is giving us a very good glimpse of the company’s first ever iPad prototype, which is said to be from six months before the launch of the device back in 2010.

The iPad apparently came with a metal enclosure to hide it from prying eyes. The leak was uncovered by Sonny Dickson on Twitter, who has been popular with Apple leaks in the past. This particular leak gives us a good idea of how secretive Apple was about the first iPad, especially given the hype surrounding its products.

Here is an excerpt from the initial discovery:

The rear shell of the iPad features an odd box-like etching around the Apple logo, along with four cut-outs in the aluminum (revealing the Wi-Fi antenna connections), multiple factory engineering asset tags (identifying the manufacturer of each part), as well as Apple Development Team prototype identification stickers, and two anomalous prototype serial numbers. On the front side of the iPad, the corresponding Development Team ID number is laser engraved into the glass in three places […] The prototype is running a fully functional build of Apple’s internal factory firmware, known as “SwitchBoard.”

Apple is expected to launch a 10.5-inch iPad Pro at WWDC next month, along with a Siri-powered smart Bluetooth speaker to rival the likes of Amazon Echo and Google Home.

[Via Twitter, 9to5Mac]