Apple designed the next two versions of the iPhone while Steve Jobs was alive, it has been claimed.
San Francisco District Attorney George Gascón was told by an Apple representative that the next two iPhone models "preceded Tim Cook", according to a report in The Examiner.
He met with Apple’s government liaison Michael Foulkes to discuss possible methods of stamping out the theft of mobile phones on the streets of San Francisco, about half of which involved an iPhone. Gascón was frustrated with Apple's apparent reluctance to introduce kill switch technology that would allow stolen phones to be disabled and claimed that manufacturers were actually benefiting from the surge in street crime.
“I think there’s just too much being made on stolen phones,” he said.
The news is likely to raise questions about the future of Apple under Tim Cook, who had the unenviable task of filling Jobs' size-14 boots when his predecessor died in October 2011 following a cancer battle.
Competitors are nipping at the heels of the once unassailable Apple, as growing numbers of global smartphone users switch to Android or Windows phones. Apple has seen a 3.5 per cent drop in global sales during the first quarter of 2013 compared to the same period last year, according to analysts Kantar Worldpanel ComTech.
It was previously known that Jobs was involved in the development of the iPhone 5 - because a passage in a recent biography described him testing out the Siri voice recognition software on the iPhone 4S successor.
Horace Dediu, who once worked for Nokia and now runs the Asymco consultancy, pointed out that long production cycles were normal in the industry.
He tweeted: "Having worked in a phone company I think it's a given. Work under way now is for products shipping in 2016." ®