Out of all the designs that are coming from the Apple vs. Samsung court trial, you can’t help but wonder why some of these designs were ever rejected. Network World takes a look at a testimony from Doug Satger, who spent 12 years at Apple, noting some design hurdles.
The most notable one was about Apple’s interest to have a curved glass design for the iPhone, but technical hurdles and cost considerations forced Apple to change their plans.
The technology in shaping the glass, the cost relative to shaping the glass at the time, and some of the design features of this specific shape were not liked. [...]The technology at the time had a lot to do with it. The qualities of the glass at the time had a lot to do with it. These are models — I’m trying to remember a time frame — that were before gorilla glass and before a lot of the other factors.
Satger also talked about the idea of an aluminum design similar to the iPod mini, but that the design was rejected for technical and comfort reasons.
My recollection of it was that to get the extruded aluminum design that was applied to the iPod to work for the iPhone, there were too many added features to allow it to be comfortable and to work properly. [...]If you put an iPod up to your ear, the sharp edges, because of the processes, aren’t comfortable, and you can’t get antennas to work properly in a fully enclosed metal jacket. So each one of those things needed to apply other features that started.
The next generation iPhone is rumored to be similar to the iPhone 4S, but have a longer display, and be thinner. It would also have a metal backplate that resembles a unibody.