Feeds

Original iPhone dev team was 'shockingly small' - Apple engineer

Yet micromanaging Jobs steered them to worldwide mobe DOMINATION

Boost IT visibility and business value

A former Apple engineer has revealed key details of the process behind the design of the iPhone.

In a rare interview, senior software engineer Greg Christie described a frenzied creative process and hinted that Steve Jobs was the boss from hell.

Jobs approached Christie and his team to asked them to get involved in a top secret fruity project called "purple".

But after growing frustrated with the less than warpspeed pace of development, the fruity führer said they had two weeks left to figure out how the software and hardware would work together, or another team would be given the task.

"Steve had pretty much had it," said Christie, who now lead the user interface team at Apple "He wanted bigger ideas and bigger concepts."

After taming the savage Steve, Christie's team then went on to dream up many familiar facets of the iPhone, including the swipe-to-unlock gesture, the cover flow method of viewing images, the address book and most importantly, the touch screen itself.

The team "banged their head against the wall" trying to master the iPhone, with the terrifying Jobsworth watching their every move.

Originally, the iPhone was going to feature a split screen, but Jobs didn't want his baby to be a Jekyll and Hyde-phone, so the idea was canned.

"Steve thought it was foolish to do a split screen on such a small display," Christie added.

The obsessive Apple godhead checked every detail with "boundless excitement" and utmost secrecy. Employees working from home were told to use their computer away from prying eyes, while cleaners were banned from the office the iPhone team were working in.

In a phrase that mirrors the endless discussion of Max Clifford's penis, the Apple man revealed the iPhone team was "shockingly small".

Christie's time in the fruity spotlight may only be beginning, as he is expected to give evidence in the next round of an interminable patent battle between Apple and Samsung, which will start again next week. ®

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

More from The Register

next story
NO MORE ALL CAPS and other pleasures of Visual Studio 14
Unpicking a packed preview that breaks down ASP.NET
KDE releases ice-cream coloured Plasma 5 just in time for summer
Melty but refreshing - popular rival to Mint's Cinnamon's still a work in progress
Leaked Windows Phone 8.1 Update specs tease details of Nokia's next mobes
New screen sizes, dual SIMs, voice over LTE, and more
Another day, another Firefox: Version 31 is upon us ALREADY
Web devs, Mozilla really wants you to like this one
Put down that Oracle database patch: It could cost $23,000 per CPU
On-by-default INMEMORY tech a boon for developers ... as long as they can afford it
Mozilla keeps its Beard, hopes anti-gay marriage troubles are now over
Plenty on new CEO's todo list – starting with Firefox's slipping grasp
Apple: We'll unleash OS X Yosemite beta on the MASSES on 24 July
Starting today, regular fanbois will be guinea pigs, it tells Reg
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.