If buying and owning a regular iPhone purchased through Apple or your friendly mobile network seems just a bit too ordinary, then how about sporting a prototype iPhone instead? Normally only available to trusted Apple employees and developers, there’s one for sale on eBay right now, but it’ll require just a bit more investment than a normal one.
At the time of writing, the prototype iPhone 6 — that’s right, you don’t even get the latest model — is approaching $9,000 in bids, which is at least 10 times the amount you’d have to splash out to get a new iPhone 6S. Why would you want such a thing, outside of the exclusivity?
On the outside, the big clue to its identity is the lack of FCC and trademarking on the rear. All it has is the Apple logo and the iPhone branding, making the device look really sleek. This type of prototype iPhone model also has a red Lightning charging port connector. However, neither of these things really warrant the extra cost.
People are keen to obtain this phone, and others like it, due to it running SwitchBoard, an Apple-only dashboard of apps made to assist debugging, testing, and other tasks that wouldn’t interest the general public. They are of interest to people who develop jailbreak tools to unlock Apple’s restrictive iOS operating system, which is why prototype phones like this are so desirable. Naturally, the phone will be network unlocked.
It’s not the first we’ve seen on the market. A similar model turned up on eBay last year and reached $100,000 in bids before being removed by the website. It’s unclear whether this was at Apple’s request, or if the same thing will happen to the current listing. If you want to make a bid, then you can find the auction here.