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Apple considered an all-screen iPad nano more than a decade before it launched an iPhone with an edge-to-edge display — and years before even the first iPhone was released.
Tony Fadell, the former senior vice president of Apple's iPod division, posted an image of several different iPod mockups to this Twitter on Monday. Fadell shared the images ahead of the launch of his new book, "Build: An Unorthodox Guide to Making Things Worth Making."
According to the former Apple SVP, the mockups were 3D printed dummies that allowed staff to have "something to hold in your hand."
These are various mockups of the iPod Nano, we explored every possibility - what if the screen was this big? What if the wheel was that big? What if there was no wheel? #BUILD #BUILDtreasurechest #Buildbook will be officially released tmrw May 3rd! https://t.co/NKMxGjoEgg pic.twitter.com/XMUHztyj2E— Tony Fadell (@tfadell) May 2, 2022
"Creating a model is a way to trick your brain, to jumpstart your imagination - once you make it physical, once you see & feel it, you can start to picture how it will become part of your life or your customers' lives," he wrote.
The team behind the iPod nano explored virtually every possibility, Fadell added — "what if the screen was this big? What if the wheel was that big? What if there was no wheel?"
Apple released the first iPod nano in 2005, three years before the first iPhone and 13 years before the edge-to-edge iPhone X. Although it never released an edge-to-edge display model of its popular music player, Fadell's images show that it at least considered the possibility.
Fadell said his book contains an entire chapter about the design of the iPod nano. The book goes on sale on May 3.