Apple has confirmed that the prototype next-generation iPhone acquired by tech blog Gizmodo is the genuine article.
In a letter sent to the blog's editorial director Brian Lam, Apple's SVP and general counsel Bruce Sewell wrote: "It has come to our attention that GIZMODO is currently in possession of a device that belongs to Apple. This letter constitutes a formal request that you return the device to Apple. Please let me know where to pick up the unit."
Gizmodo has also published more details of how it came to possess the device, claiming that Apple software engineer Gray Powell left the device behind in a German beer garden in Redwood City, California on the evening of 18 March.
The curious aspect to the story is that the person who found the handset seemingly called Apple to try to return it. "No one took him seriously and all he got for his troubles was a ticket number."