Story About Steve Jobs Calling AT&T About Making a Good Phone


Back in 2006, then Apple CEO Steve Jobs called Ralph de la Vega of Cingular Wireless (Cingular would later become part of AT&T.) There’s an interesting bit of Apple history regarding the iPhone here.

Steve spoke to de la Vega and asked him about building “a really good phone.” He wanted the radio to be great.

At the time, AT&T had a manual that was about 1,000 pages long. It was for suppliers who wanted to build a phone on their network. Here’s a snippet of the story:

He said, ‘Well, send it to me.’ So I sent him an e-mail. Thirty seconds, he calls me back. ‘Hey, what the … ? What’s going on? You’re sending me this big document, and the first 100 pages have to do with the standard keyboard,’ ” de la Vega says, laughing. ‘ “ Sorry we didn’t take those first 100 pages out, Steve. Forget those 100 pages. Those don’t apply to you.’ He says, ‘Okay,’ and he hangs up the phone.”

It’s funny, because the story actually goes on to talk about how under-wraps the whole project was and how difficult it was for de la Vega to keep this handset a secret from his bosses.

Check out the full story at Forbes.

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