The story that was making the rounds on various blogs appears to be nothing more than a hoax, according to police that were said to have been involved in the investigation attempting to track down who took the phone.
A CNET.com report noted striking similarities between how both the iPhone 4 and 5 prototypes were both lost in bars of all places. This time around, the report states that an employee accidentally left the highly secretive prototype at a tequila bar called Cava 22 in San Francisco’s Mission district. Like the last one that was lost, it was then sold on Craiglist and a lucky buyer lucked out on getting the brand new, yet-to-be-released phone for only $200.
The report then said that while Apple didn’t tell police about the incident right away, they did after a few days. A CNET “source” said that the phone was tracked down to a neighborhood in Bernal Heights but a resident living there denied having anything to do with taking the phone.
However, police are now denying being involved in an investigation to find the phone. Peter Jamison of San Francisco Weekly called police in San Francisco to ask for details about the story, but police note that they don’t have any record of a phone being reported missing by Apple lately. An officer noted that he talked to CNET, who originally broke the story, and said that he doesn’t know what source broke the news to the website, but it isn’t true.
This, of course, fuels rumors about if the phone was lost at all, or if it was a publicity stunt. Many are speculating that it could have been an Apple insider source who leaked the false story in order to detract the news of Steve Jobs stepping down as CEO. Others are insisting that perhaps it was the bar itself who was the source in order to garner publicity. All agree that the person responsible for the likely false story had too much time on their hands.
As for the iPhone 5 itself, it is expected to be released this upcoming October to Verizon and AT&T services, with rumors stating that Sprint could be negotiating with Apple to become the third provider to carry the popular phone.