If it’s one thing that I see with Apple more than almost any other company, it’s fake products. From the 1,000 or so fan made designs of the iPhone and widescreen iPods, to the tablet Mac concepts we see all the time, people just LOVE making fake Apple products.
There is one hoax, however, that stands out as one of the most elaborate I think I’ve ever seen.
The device was rumored for a long time to be the next generation Newton. A new Apple PDA. iWalk rumors actually pre-date the iPod itself. Spymac (which was then a Mac rumors site with an, apparently poor level of accuracy, and is now a YouTube like video sharing portal – go figure) actually posted an image of the iWalk PDA device claiming it was going to be the “breakthrough” device that Apple revealed in October of 2001. Of course, that wasn’t true. That breakthrough device was, in fact, the iPod.
The device rumors again surfaced in Jan. or 2002 before Macworld. This time the images of the device even included video like the one below…
Wired posted a story about the videos before Macworld, debunking the rumors…but some fans wanted to believe it was real anyway – at least until Macworld 2002, when the device was nowhere to be found.
Just yesterday, as I was writing the first part of this article, the device showed up in The Apple Blog’s Top 10 list of Apple Rumors that never came true, and it has had a continued presence on the web since the images and videos first surfaced online at the beginning of the century.
The iWalk will never exist, especially now that the PDA market is in decline, and the Smartphone market has taken its place. The iPhone is as close a successor the Newton as we’re ever likely to see, and I think it’s ultimately great that this thing was fake. If Apple had tried their hand at the PDA market again and failed (as this device surely would have – I mean, who wants that big honkin’ knob sticking out of your pocket?) the iPhone might never have existed.