Choose Your Own Adventure: The Gizmodo iPhone Saga

 Get an overview with this handy flowchart. Then scroll down and start clicking through the interactive story.

Choose Your Own Adventure: The Gizmodo iPhone Saga


[Infographic by Sheryl Sulistiawan and Tyler Gray]

Click below to begin your adventure!

Every fact we discover about this whole lost iPhone story leads to another, and then there’s one that refutes the first fact and then another that proves the first one true but negates the latter two, and so on. The legality of the case is in the murkiest of water, to the point where you can almost choose your own conclusion based on what’s known–and not come out any less accurate than someone with the opposite conclusion. Hence, we present the entire saga, as it’s currently known, in the style of a Choose Your Own Adventure book. If you’re a pictures kind of person, follow the flowchart above, which is a rough visual interpretation of the story here.

(We’ll try and update both as the case develops–or our head explodes.)

Oh, and you can read a more traditionally laid-out version of the story in our explainer.

Start here:


Gray Powell, an Apple engineer, is out on the town at a German bar in Redwood City, CA on his birthday. He’s got a prototype iPhone, disguised as an iPhone 3GS, that he’s testing out. When he leaves the bar, he accidentally leaves the iPhone prototype behind.

Secret Source (will be referred to as such from here on out) is another patron at the bar. He spies the iPhone, and asks around at the bar to try to find the owner, but is unsuccessful. Secret Source takes the iPhone home with him.


a. Stop right there. This is obviously an Apple conspiracy to get more press for the upcoming iPhone. Powell “accidentally leaves the iPhone behind”? Yeah, right. Apple doesn’t make mistakes like that. That’s all I need to hear. Click here.

b. Keep going–what happened the following morning? Click here.

Choose Your Own Adventure (R) Chooseco LLC and was used with
permission.  Choose Your Own Adventure books are currently republished
by Chooseco, more info here


Dan Nosowitz, the author of this post, can be followed on Twitter, corresponded with via email, and stalked in San Francisco (no link for that one–you’ll have to do the legwork yourself).

About the author

Dan Nosowitz is a freelance writer and editor who has written for Popular Science, The Awl, Gizmodo, Fast Company, BuzzFeed, and elsewhere. He holds an undergraduate degree from McGill University and currently lives in Brooklyn, because he has a beard and glasses and that's the law.