FORTUNE -- For reporters who know how hard it is to get anyone at Apple (AAPL) to talk -- never mind an engineer at the center of the action -- Fred Vogelstein's piece in the Oct. 4 New York Times Sunday Magazine was a revelation. It told the iPhone creation story from the perspective of Andy Grignon, the senior engineer in charge of all the iPhone's transmitters and receivers.
Grignon, who was sitting -- terrified -- in the audience as Steve Jobs unveiled the first iPhone, knew that the device Jobs was taking through its paces wasn't anywhere close to finished. It was a prototype -- one of a handful that worked well enough in January 2007 to risk a public demonstration -- and although they'd rehearsed the demo more than 100 times, something had always gone wrong. If the radios failed this time, Grignon would feel the full force of Jobs' fury.
Miraculously, the keynote went flawlessly, and by the end Grignon wasn't just relieved, he was drunk. He'd and a half dozen engineers and managers had been doing shots every time their portion of the demo was over. "When the finale came," Grignon recalls, "we all just drained the flask."
Grignon's story is the opening anecdote of Vogelstein's Dogfight: How Apple and Google Went to War and Started a Revolution, which went on sale Tuesday. The book is loaded with fresh, never-before-reported details thanks to interviews that Vogelstein, a contributing editor at Wired, scored with nearly a dozen Apple engineers, managers and partners who had either never spoken to a reporter before or never talked at length about their experiences.
Dogfight is one of a pair of new Apple books coming out of the The Grotto, the shared workspace of several dozen San Francisco writers. The second is by Yukari Iwatani Kane, a former Wall Street Journal who has served up more than her share of Apple scoops -- including the news of Jobs' 2009 liver transplant.
Kane's Haunted Empire: Apple after Steve Jobs, is due out in March. It should be worth the wait.
UPDATE: A third Apple book arrived two days later: Leander ("Cult of Mac") Kahney's Jony Ive: The Genius Behind Apple's Greatest Products. There are at least three promotional videos floating around, including an "official trailer" that's getting some heat for a tag line ("Did we give credit to the wrong guy?") that's seen as disrespecting Steve Jobs.
The documentary that premiers Thursday night covers some well-plowed ground
There could be a few surprises in the hour-long biography of Steve Jobs that will kick off this year's "CNBC Titans" series. But judging from the previews and Web-extra videos posted on the show's site, it's a long shot.
For people who have followed the career of Apple's (AAPL) co-founder and CEO, the photography and film clips will have a familiar feel MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Jun 23, 2011 7:11 AM ET
Apple's pre-announcements -- of Mac OS X Lion, iOS 5 and iCloud -- have only made things worse
I've never see the Apple (AAPL) cognoscenti quite so confused. They're all in town for the Worldwide Developers Conference that opens Monday at San Francisco's Moscone West -- the first one since 2007 that doesn't feature a new iPhone. And without that shiny piece of hardware to anchor their thoughts, they seem to MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Jun 6, 2011 3:29 AM ET
Rare photos taken shortly after his cancer operation are now available in Getty's archives
On July 31, 2004, Steve Jobs underwent surgery to remove a malignant tumor from his pancreas. A few weeks later, he permitted Diana Walker, his favorite Time Magazine contract photographer, to shoot him in his Palo Alto home.
A selection of those photos have surfaced in Getty Images' archives, where they were discovered by allaboutstevejobs.com. On Monday they MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Nov 16, 2010 7:25 AM ET
Meet the creative director who named a generation of Apple products
The TBWA\Chiat\Day creative team was horrified in 1998 when Steve Jobs pulled back a cloth and revealed the bulbous teardrop that came to be known as the Bondi-Blue iMac.
But then Jobs wasn't so crazy at first about the name they proposed for it.
No one had ever seen anything like the new computer, veteran creative director Ken Segall tells Cult of MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Nov 4, 2009 1:47 PM ET
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