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Tony Fadell: Apple seriously considered hardware keyboard for iPhone

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On tonight's episode of On The Verge, Nest founder Tony Fadell discussed his time working on the original iPhone, and how Apple internally considered using a hardware keyboard before moving forward with the design that debuted in 2007.

iphone 4 4s
iphone 4 4s

Tony Fadell stopped by On The Verge tonight, and during a fun and wide-ranging interview he had an interesting revelation about his time working on the original iPhone: namely, that a hardware keyboard was seriously considered within Apple before the iconic touchscreen-only design was given the green light. He said there were three different versions: an "iPod + Phone," a different iteration that was called the "iPhone," and finally, the device that was ultimately introduced back in January of 2007. As for Fadell's own take on a hardware keyboard? He told the audience tonight that he himself knew the potential of virtual keyboards, and personally wanted to wait to implement one before going with the hardware option. Fadell worked on the iPhone up until the 3GS — and was involved with a whopping 18 generations of the iPod line — before stepping away to start Nest. The guys are still in the studio talking as of this writing, but if you'd like to see the full interview for yourself, it will be available as soon as our crack team of editors paste the pixels together.

Ross Miller contributed to this report.