iPhone, iPod Prototypes On eBay Bug Apple


A prerelease iPhone apparently hit eBay earlier this week -- though it was gone from the site Tuesday. According to reports, the iPhone prototype ran a beta version of the iPhone OS. The device had a matte plastic screen and was manufactured in China toward the end of 2006.

Bundled with that product was a nonworking prototype with a glass screen in "fair" condition. The price for the two reached at least $735 before being taken down. It's not certain if the seller took it down or whether it was pulled by eBay.

If the latter, that's the same fate that befell the auction of a prototype iPod. An internal tester of the device placed the iPod on the auction site at the end of February. On his blog, the seller, Mike Evangelist, said he received an e-mail from eBay, saying they had taken the auction down, because "the rights owner, Apple Inc., notified eBay that this listing violates intellectual property rights. When eBay receives a report of this type of violation, we remove the listing to comply with the law."

Evangelist wound up offering the prerelease iPod for auction on his own site.

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