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Rumor Control: Star Trek Movie Communicator NOT Based On iPhone

There is a new rumor being floated by iPhone Savior (and picked up by TrekWeb) that the communicator props being used by the crew of the USS Enterprise in the new Star Trek movie are based on “a slickly modified version” of Apple’s iPhone. TrekMovie.com has checked with multiple sources and has confirmed this is rumor is entirely untrue.

According to one source the new Starfleet communicator props were built entirely from scratch and “look nothing like any commercially available product.” Another source reports that the communicators (which we reported on previously) retain the traditional TOS ‘flip’ style (unlike the iPhone), but do have a small video screen on the inside. TrekMovie.com has also received a couple of reports that Nokia (and not Apple) may do some promotions related to the new Star Trek movie, but that it doesn’t involve any product placement or Nokia devices being used for the movie.

Report from Iceland?
The iPhoneSavior also reports their source is “supposedly coming from on location in Iceland.” However, TrekMovie.com has been told that there is actually not any location shooting going on in Iceland. Although there was scouting done in Iceland, plans were eventually changed.

Apple in Trek
Although this rumor is total BS, Apple has worked its way into Star Trek before. In the 1986 film Star Trek IV , Scotty used the ‘quaint’ Apple Macintosh which had only been introduced to the market two years earlier.

And we know that there has been Apple products on the bridge of the new Enterprise, because Bob Orci sent in pictures of JJ Abrams using a MacBook to participate in the live chat with fans at TrekMovie.com…and Bob used his iPhone to take the pictures.


JJ Abrams & Bryan Burk chatting with fans from “Star Trek” Enterprise Bridge set, Jan 25th 2008

 

Sort by:   newest | oldest | most voted
Mammalian Verisimilitude
March 21, 2008 11:45 am

Well, Apple get enough free placement as it is.

Incidentally “no comments yet – be the first?” doesn’t seem to discourage people posting just to say “first”…

Kevin Tyler
March 21, 2008 11:47 am

I would definately get a Trek flip-phone if they made one.

March 21, 2008 11:49 am

Any news relating to _less_ product placement is good news. :)

Denise de Arman
March 21, 2008 12:00 pm

Good reporting Anthony – I bet everyone here would love to sneak a peek at your list of source names. Don’t leave your blackberry laying around – someone may borrow it!

toddk
March 21, 2008 12:04 pm

yes once again everyone (including paramount) is saying no star trek phone..it would be a best seller..but noooooooooooooooooooo….what a bunch of crap! besides (idoubt) that steve jobs has ever even heard of star trek…wouldnt suprise me…

freezejeans
March 21, 2008 12:09 pm

#2

Same here…did anyone have the TOS walkie-talkies back in the 70’s? They were the closest thing to an actual communicator, and they worked–at least up to a block away :) But they were also HUGE, not even close to the size of the real thing.

Herbert Eyes Wide Open
March 21, 2008 12:10 pm

As much as I love my iPhone and Apple products in general… I’m glad.

Although the iPhone is one of those rare products that actually transcends the hype, I don’t want Star Trek production design influenced by anything that is too accessible.

However, I’m guessing that some descendants of Jobs & Company are toiling away at a Star Fleet R&D facility in the 23rd century. ;)

Jorg Sacul
March 21, 2008 12:12 pm

and the irony of it all is that flip phones never would have been conceived of had Trek not had that flip-lid communicator!

freezejeans
March 21, 2008 12:12 pm

LOL I found a commercial for the TOS communicator walkie-talkies & base unit, check out the size of the thing! And yes, we wore ’em on the belts of our corduroy pants.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bUesQ6wA4Uo

Denise de Arman
March 21, 2008 12:22 pm

Anthony- LOL!

Go Spock!
March 21, 2008 12:25 pm

10 – yeah, that’s one looooooong antenna!

CmdrR
March 21, 2008 12:26 pm

Communicators SHOULD have video. I’m sure they would have if TOS had had the budget. Bet they project holograms, too.

Sisko Is The Prophet, Peace Be Upon Him
March 21, 2008 12:32 pm

TrekWeb…what a joke. Is there any bs they wont fall for? remember their report on the phasers for the new movie?

thank god for trekmovie.com

freezejeans
March 21, 2008 12:37 pm

#13

Dude…hologram projection is a terrific idea. Lots of possibilities with that. I’m with you on the video capability as well in TOS, no doubt they’d have done if they’d the means. If the redshirts had been able to transmit what they were seeing before their inevitable decimation…hahaha

MORN SPEAKS
March 21, 2008 12:39 pm

My phone is actually considered the “Star Trek” phone. It’s the Cingular 3125.

number6
March 21, 2008 12:40 pm

I will sooooo boycott this film if they don’t use the Cage communicators!!

jonboc
March 21, 2008 12:45 pm

Wow, I forgot how huge those old blue MEGO communicators were! Toys have come a long way, just check out the newly released AA communicator “toy”. The new toy has digital sampling from the episodes, LED lights, the famous opening chirp, a spinning motorized moire pattern and a metal brass colored top. And I got it for $19 plus shipping!

They won’t be able to keep these on the shelves. TOS props continue to impress 40 years later, who needs an iphone?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q2AlS7-oQm0

Cobalt Ben
March 21, 2008 12:53 pm

TrekWeb sucks.

freezejeans
March 21, 2008 12:56 pm

#18

Indeed…I still have the MEGO ones and just ordered the new AA one. Can’t wait :D You’re right about the 40-year-old designs, too–still impressive today.

Morty
March 21, 2008 1:03 pm

Working in the mobile/cell phone industry I would have to say I would be extremely disappointed if they used the overrated piece of crap that is the iphone as a basis for the Trek communicator! If they were going to do any kind of product placement like this in the new movie I would hope that whatever handset they released based on the trek communicator would be a high end cutting edge device! If that turns out to be the case then I would happily buy one but I imagine as is often the case with trek themed products we would just end up getting ripped off with a phone that looks nice but is very poor feature wise – kind of like the Iphone!

sirh
March 21, 2008 1:07 pm

There is a rumor of a flip style iPhone coming out this year… Movie tie-in?

As much as I love the iPhone… I gotta say not a good idea!

http://www.electronista.com/articles/08/03/17/apple.dual.side.touchpad/

Kevin
March 21, 2008 1:25 pm

Wow… really glad this isn’t true. I think I would boycott all future Trek if they were to put anything Apple related int he movie(save for graphics designed on a Mac Pro or something).

Joel
March 21, 2008 1:27 pm

The notion that they were using the iPhone design to begin with was ridiculous. We should give these guys more credit than that. They will no doubt use an updated design to the original communicator. That’s what they’ve been talking about the whole time. Keeping the feel of TOS but updating it. I dig the idea of a small video screen. Glad to hear the iPhone thing was a junk rumor.

THX-1138
March 21, 2008 1:40 pm

#23

That’s a bit drastic, no? What if Kirk’s mom bakes an apple pie? What if the Romulans want to change history just to get our recipe for apple sauce? What if Starfleet just decides that they hate Vistas version 12?

I have always loved the props from TOS, but realistically, how was one to get any information from them? A lot of times, McCoy would just wave his scanner over a patient without using a tricorder. The communicator has two buttons and no screen yet it can communicate with everybody through some form of precognition to whom you wished to speak. What was the moire for? At least the tricorder had a screen, but it only had a couple of buttons. I love them, though.

I feel I may have just started an argument.

James Cannon (1701-A)
March 21, 2008 1:50 pm

The Tricorder prop was ahead of its time. Spock however used to use it upside down while everyone else looked straight at it.

Must have been that Vulcans as well as having inner eyelids are able to read upside down.

March 21, 2008 1:56 pm

Spock used it upside down because Nimoy was smart enough to know that showing the audience the INTERESTING side of the tricorder was better than showing them the boring back of one. A consummate pro.

And I have an iPhone, with a picture of a communicator grid on it.

Devon
March 21, 2008 2:01 pm

Whew, here I feared that Leonard Nimoy was going to do a trippy iPhone commercial singing “Dance Tonight.”

Nathan
March 21, 2008 2:03 pm

#23 Kevin:

Actually, they already used an Mac computer in Trek IV for the scene in the Plexiglass factory…so you’d better start getting that boycott organized…:-)

Izbot
March 21, 2008 2:22 pm

Thank god it was just a rumor. All that in-show advertising is a nightmare. Did anyone catch that pathetic excuse for an “episode” of Smallville last week that amounted to one big ad for Stride Gum and some lame band called One Republic? If this is the future of advertising I am greatly disillusioned.

Jorg Sacul
March 21, 2008 2:29 pm

*cough*Knight Rider/Ford*cough*

Captain Scokirk
March 21, 2008 2:31 pm

Maybe a tricorder has a gyroscopic screen that allows the user to determine which way he wants to use it ; the buttons were all round so they could have worked the same way.

March 21, 2008 2:40 pm

I heard the new enterprise is actually a new ford mustang, with a modified body kit of course – imagine a big ass ford badge on the saucer section

Seth
March 21, 2008 3:04 pm

The TrekWeb guys should have dove into the iPhone Savior site a bit deeper to realize that there’s a lot of stuff that is created to be wildly absurd. Apple fan boys are hungry for news no matter if it is only rumor. Are Trekkies much different? All depends on who you ask on any given day. I’m all for the FORD Enterprise idea. Sounds possible.

Vulcan Soul
March 21, 2008 3:24 pm

These days Apple products are nothing but a slick way for people to show off their alleged “coolness”, their affiliation with the “in-crowd”. No need for that in a Star Trek movie.

Herbert Eyes Wide Open
March 21, 2008 3:35 pm

For all those uninformed iPhone haters… Apple must be doing something right…

http://gizmodo.com/gadgets/smartphones/iphone-greedily-eats-north-american-market-share-334516.php

In fact, Apple’s share is even larger today. so, yeah… stay in your Blackberry/crappy PC/Windows world and keep venting about how crappy Apple and iPhone is… Especially now that they’ve launched their… (drum roll please) Enterprise Solutions.

Too, too funny.

trekofficial
March 21, 2008 3:37 pm

NOT CANNON!!!

Apple wasn’t even invented when Gene began Star Trek therefore it can never be part of the legacy.Sorry folks
move on

Izbot
March 21, 2008 3:42 pm

37. trekofficial

I like the way you think!

Herbert Eyes Wide Open
March 21, 2008 3:53 pm

I don’t worry about those that think they know what canon is… especially when they cannot spell the word properly…

http://www.thefreedictionary.com/canon

vs.

http://www.thefreedictionary.com/cannon

I know they sound the same but really… sheeeesh!

CLS USMC
March 21, 2008 4:10 pm

WOW, I work for AT&T and even I don’t hard sell the iPhone that much! :)

SEMPER FI

[The] TOS Purist aka The Purolator
March 21, 2008 4:27 pm

Check the spelling of “Bridge” at the very end of the entry…you’ve got it listed as “Bridget set.” Somehow I don’t think that Bardot had anything to do with Star Trek…lol!!

Just helping out. :)

4 8 15 16 23 42
March 21, 2008 4:32 pm

Arguing about cell phone/PDA brands, please… talk about “Get a life”

Anyway, I don’t care what the brand, I am glad this little atrocity is not true. The communicator should recognizably be ONE THING: the TOS Star Trek communicator — not an iPhone, Blackberry, or Hitachi Magic Wand…

This is one thing they did right in ST: Enterprise (Haters just go away now).

Irish Trekki
March 21, 2008 4:45 pm

Is it sad to admit that the sole reason I bought a Motarola razr was because it looked like the original series communicator?

1701 over Gotham City
March 21, 2008 4:46 pm

Rumors surrounding the exhibits at Toyfair said that Communicator and Phaser were extremely close to the originals, and supposedly had the same sounds as the originals.

Green-Blooded-Bastard
March 21, 2008 4:49 pm

The new Enterprise has a Hemi in it.

K.M.Kirby
March 21, 2008 4:57 pm

This iPhone thing is a hurtful rumor. However, if true, it’d be totally cool.

Treknoob
March 21, 2008 5:05 pm

I wish we could all make some flower pedal tea and enjoy the cake of rainbows I baked for everyone. If we can learn anything from Star Trek 1966 (classic Gene Roddenberry) it’s that different species can learn to get along. I just wish that the cavemen who don’t understand iPhone can learn from us and join our superior race. I only hope you bearded Klingons will listen.

Denise de Arman
March 21, 2008 5:15 pm

Irish#43- No, Irish, it isn’t sad – it’s natural for this group. You are among friends… relax into the Collective’s embrace.

Treknoob#47- LOL!

4 8 15 16 23 42
March 21, 2008 5:18 pm

#47 – “flower pedal tea”? Uh, yuck! A tea made of pedals would be all metallic with hints of rubber and grime… ;-)

Viking
March 21, 2008 5:43 pm

My Virgin Mobile Snapper has a lot of classic communicator ergonomics to it…….especially if the TOS/movie model would have had an LCD screen. I’ve looked high and low to see if anyone markets a universal flip-phone skin to make it look like a TOS communicator, but alas, I’ve been plumbing a dry well.

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