Apple's next iPhone, unofficially called the 5, is the constant subject of competing rumors, with photos claiming to be leaked from factory specs flying around.
While there's no way to verify the photos until Apple makes an announcement, photos of prototype iPhones from 2006 came to light Thursday, and they're just as interesting. Oddly enough, one of the designs resembles a less refined iPhone 4, with another looking a lot like a bigger iPod mini (remember those?).
Early development of the phone seems to be heavily inspired by Sony. In fact, this prototype even has the Sony logo emblazoned on the back, as well as several additional buttons and some kind of odd knob on the side.
The "Sony-style" phone appears to have been developed in part by Jonathan "Jony" Ive and Richard Howarth, as seen in this email between the two.
The Verge also uncovered a sleeker, slimmer and much longer protoype of the iPhone named the N90. According to the site, N90 was once the development name for the iPhone 4. This phone, however, more closely resembles and elongated 3G.
Finally, the site also revealed an odd, hexagonal model of the iPhone 4. This one just seems to be a computer rendering and not an actual photo, so it's uncertain how close this bizarre design was to production.
There you have it, some early designs across the iPhone's history. Are they better or worse than what we ended up with?