updated 01:35 am EDT, Sat July 30, 2011
iPhone 5 case deluge hits China
An abundance of possible iPhone 5 cases found late Friday may have helped give clues as to the final design of the iPhone 5. The China-made silicone skins seen by MIC Gadget all mirror those seen earlier and support early descriptions of a major redesign of the case. All appear to have a larger surface area than the iPhone 4, tapering sides, and the ringer as well as volume controls put on opposite sides for the first time.
Purported evidence of a redesigned camera layout would be thrown into dispute by the cases, though, as all of them have the camera and flash in the same general location. A decision to widen the flash area could be a clue of a dual LED flash but isn't certain.
With production of the iPhone 5 either underway or starting soon for a September release, small Chinese outlets may have a good chance of getting final design schematics. Many of them are likely keen to seize on the launch and may be hoping they can have a large number of cases in the channel by the time Apple is ready to sell. At least a few companies accurately produced iPad 2 cases just before the tablet became available.
Occasionally, these can be premature and based on designs Apple has modified or even scrapped entirely, leaving a possibility that the iPhone 5 cases don't reflect the original designs. Given that manufacturer sources are known to leak blueprints, however, the plurality of cases and their similar designs suggest that at least some of the design traits represent the final product.