Steve Jobs gave Barack Obama a sneak peek at an iPhone prototype

In 2007, before the iPhone was unveiled to the world, Apple CEO Steve Jobs gave President Barack Obama a sneak peak at the iconic smartphone.

Steve Jobs in 2010
Matthew Yohe (CC BY-SA 3.0)
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In January of 2007, Steve Jobs wowed the world and forever changed the landscape of mobile technology when he got up on stage and unveiled the original iPhone. While the revolutionary impact of some products sometimes takes years to manifest, the iPhone was a game-changer right from the start.

While Steve Jobs had a well-known penchant for keeping upcoming products out of the public eye, the iPhone was so great that the Apple CEO couldn't help but show off a prototype of the device to President Barack Obama.

The interesting tidbit comes courtesy of Seth Weintraub over at 9to5Mac who was able to get a small excerpt from the upcoming book Believer, a collection of political stories written by David Axelrod, Obama's chief campaign adviser in 2008.

In 2007, Obama got a sneak peek at the iPhone during a private meeting with Apple’s Steve Jobs. "If it were legal, I would buy a boatload of Apple stock. This thing is going to be really big," Obama said after the meeting.

Indeed, with shares of Apple now selling at record highs, Obama would have made off like a bandit if it weren't for insider trading rules.

Notably, this wouldn't be the last time Obama was given a sneak peak at an upcoming Apple product.

During a 2011 interview with George Stephanopolous, Obama said that he received an iPad 2 from Jobs before it was unveiled to the world.

"Steve Jobs actually gave it to me, a little bit early," Obama explained. "Yeah, it was cool. I got it directly from him."

It's good to be king.

On a related note, Obama and Jobs seemingly had an interesting relationship. In Walter Isaacson's Jobs biography, there's an anecdote about how Jobs in 2010 initially refused to meet with Obama unless he was asked personally by Obama himself. Eventually, the story goes that Jobs's stubbornness gave way to reason. 

Isaacson also relays that Jobs, who while socially liberal was not keen on Obama's position on big business, wasn't afraid to tell Obama that he was "headed for a one-term presidency."

Say what you will about Jobs, but he wasn't afraid to speak his mind and no one was safe from his barbs, not even to the President of the United States.

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