Apple engineer 'devastated' by iPhone loss

The father of Gray Powell, the Apple engineer who reportedly lost a prototype of the iPhone 4G, says his son was reeling following the incident.

"Of course he was devastated," Robert Powell told CNET in a phone interview on Wednesday. "He loves the company."

(Credit: Gizmodo)

Gray Powell, 27, finds himself in the middle of a media frenzy after losing a handset that appears to be a next-generation iPhone, a device that has yet to be released or even acknowledged by Apple. We've been trying to reach the younger Powell directly and passed along an interview request through his father.

Last month, Gray Powell visited the Gourmet Haus Staudt in Redwood City, California, to celebrate his birthday and apparently forgot the prototype at the bar.

A person who has yet to be identified picked up the phone. Not long thereafter, either that person or someone else connected began contacting media outlets, including gadget blogs Gizmodo and Engadget, to gauge their interest in buying the phone.

Nick Denton, CEO of Gawker Media, Gizmodo's parent company, acknowledged paying US$5000 to obtain the device knowing that his company was handing money over to someone other than the phone's rightful owner. Gizmodo also published a story about how Powell lost the phone.

Robert Powell had strong opinions about the person who found the phone: "The bottom line is the guy stole the phone," he said. "The guy's a thief."

"The bottom line is the guy [who found Apple engineer Gray Powell's iPhone 4G and sold it to Gizmodo] stole the phone. The guy's a thief."
-Robert Powell, Gray's father

Gray Powell joined Apple after spending time with Sony Ericsson, a position that required he criss-cross the globe, according to his father. As a student at North Carolina State, Gray studied electrical and computer engineering .

Ever since the story of the lost phone broke, techies have wondered what would become of the person who misplaced it. Surely, many observers assumed, the super-secretive Apple would make those responsible for losing the device pay dearly. Apple goes to great lengths to guard product launches and trade secrets.

Is Gray Powell in jeopardy of losing his job?

"I think he'll be OK," said Robert Powell. "He's good at what he does. He's a hard worker."

Via CNET



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Hdes posted a comment   

A total publicity stunt. What is with all this and the Ipad being broken for the first person in the world???

Also an excuse for Apple from the competition as people will sympathize that Apple's Iphone lost to HTC's Desire (an extremely smart phone) since the specs were reveled earlier. Apple is all about marketing..

 

hairy weener posted a comment   

I don't think it was a publicity stunt apple always keepd their new products secret

 

waza posted a comment   

nothing but a publicity stunt. even the person who "found" the phone & sold it, would have been on Apple's payroll.

 

Chase posted a comment   

I reckon it was just a publicity stunt. I seiously don't think he would just forgot an iphone 4g prototype in a bathroom.

 

Al posted a comment   

How about the poor guy who has now been named, first be gizmodo and now everyone else. I think that's the big thing coming out of this story, what lengths news sites will go to.

 

Crazy?? posted a comment   

I think Apple should give him a raise...thats if it wasn't a publicity stunt to begin with..he's got the public interest in the phone right up there!! Free marketing..woohooooo!

 

TC posted a reply   

Yeah... because Apple has always had a problem generating interest in their products.

Tech PR 101: Don't pre-announce any product. iPhone sales will be hit very hard over the next few months as consumers hold their purchases and wait for the new hardware.

 

hrc1079 posted a reply   

Totally agree. Apple are the masters of keeping everything secret until THEY want it released. It was only a matter of time before something like this happened but with only a few months until the new iPhone is released everyone will now hold off on getting the existing 3GS taking sales away from Apple.

 

hrc1079 posted a reply   

Totally agree. Apple are the masters of keeping everything secret until THEY want it released. It was only a matter of time before something like this happened but with only a few months until the new iPhone is released everyone will now hold off on getting the existing 3GS taking sales away from Apple.




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