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This early iPhone had an iPod-like interface and a digital click wheel

Video footage has emerged, reportedly showing an early prototype of what would eventually become the iPhone, complete with a primitive user interface based on the iPod

The experimental Acorn OS, featured an iPod Classic-like interface with a digital click wheel that could be used for navigating between menus.

The video, posted by Apple blogger and tipster Sonny Dickson, shows menus for SMS, Phone, Photos, Contacts, Recents, Calendar and many others that would become core apps in the future.

For years, there’s been rumours of a click wheel iPhone prototype and, if today’s reveal is accurate, this would seem to confirm its existence.

Of course, Apple would eventually go a different route and, looking at the software on the prototype it’s hard to argue it made the right choice.

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Judging by screenshots posted by Dickson, the software appears to be dated 2006, a year before Apple would eventually release the iPhone in an entirely different guise.

Dickson backs up his claim by noting a patent filed before the launch of the iPhone, which detailed a multi-touch device with a click-wheel.

The poster doesn’t reveal how he came by the device, but hopes it will remain out of Apple’s destructive clutches and find its way into a museum.

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