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Did Apple Lose Another iPhone in a Bar?

BOSTON ( TheStreet) -- An Apple (AAPL - Get Report) employee has reportedly lost another iPhone in a bar, this time leaving behind a prototype of the unreleased iPhone 5.

CNET reported Wednesday that Apple scrambled to recover the unreleased handset after an employee left the device at Cava22, a tequila bar, in San Francisco's Mission district, in late July. The report, which didn't answer whether the iPhone prototype was ever recovered by Apple, cites a source familiar with the investigation.

"This year's lost phone seems to have taken a more mundane path: it was taken from a Mexican restaurant and bar and may have been sold on Craigslist for $200," the CNET report says. Days after the device went missing, Apple representatives contacted San Francisco police and electronically traced the phone to a two-floor, single-family home in San Francisco's Bernal Heights neighborhood, according to CNET's source.

A man living at the home denied knowing anything about the phone, according to the CNET report. Apple employees even offered the man money for the phone, no questions asked, although the man still denied knowledge of the phone, the source told CNET.

Apple did not immediately respond to requests from TheStreet for comment.

Last year, a prototype of the iPhone 4 went missing after an Apple employee left the phone at a beer garden in Redwood City, California, before the handset was unveiled to the public. Tech blog Gizmodo eventually purchased the unreleased device for $5,000 and detailed the phones new features, sparking a criminal charges by prosecutors against the two men who allegedly found and sold the phone.

Apple is widely expected to introduce the iPhone 5 in the next month, with speculation that the upgraded device could feature higher data speeds and may finally come to Sprint Nextel (S).

-- Written by Robert Holmes in Boston.

>To contact the writer of this article, click here: Robert Holmes.

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Disclosure: TheStreet's editorial policy prohibits staff editors, reporters and analysts from holding positions in any individual stocks.

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