The secret origin story of the iPhone

If you worked at Apple in the mid-2000s, you might have noticed a strange phenomenon afoot: people were disappearing.

It happened slowly at first. One day there’d be an empty chair where a star engineer used to sit. A key member of the team, gone. Nobody could tell you exactly where they went.

“I had been hearing rumblings about, well, it was unclear what was being built, but it was clear that a lot of the best engineers from the best teams had been slurped over to this mysterious team,” says Evan Doll, who was then a software engineer at Apple.

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