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iPhone 5 cases rumored based on sold-off chassis prototype

updated 04:40 pm EDT, Tue September 27, 2011

iPhone 5 design possibly slipped by Foxconn staff

The glut of iPhone 5 cases with a similar design may have come from yet another backroom deal for a prototype. A rumor passed along to MIC Gadget alleged that a chassis had been "lost," or more likely sold off through a bribe, near Foxconn's factory in the Futian district of Shenzhen. One case manufacturer allegedly paid the equivalent of $3,124 to get access and, before long, led to many others in the area having access to the same information.

The model in question was supposedly intended to test the ergonomics of the design and not the components. A look inside allegedly showed just a modest change to the regular A4-based iPhone 4. Even with these old components, the device may have been enclosed in a case that made it look like an iPhone 4 to throw off curious observers.

"Thousands" of the cases have been made by some of the companies involved, according to the stories.

While the story is unverified, it lines up with a widely known practice in the area. Foxconn staff were thought to have leaked out the iPad 2's dimensions to case makers months ahead of time and were eventually arrested. Many of the companies wanting access to the design, often small startups just outside of Foxconn's factories, see the risks as worth having cases on the market well ahead of those waiting for official blueprints.

All of the cases released in recent weeks have shown a virtually identical design. Although a third thinner than the iPhone 4, it's wider and noticeably taller than the current design, a strong indication that Apple is using a bigger screen if the frame is accurate.

by MacNN Staff



    Comment buried. Show
  1. prl99

    Joined: Dec 1969


    hope this isn't the size

    My iPhone 3GS fits in my pocket. Looking at how much bigger this case is, the new iPhone will be too big for me, and I presume, many others. I feel the current size is fine. Those phones and small tablets that are larger are too big to use as a phone. We might as well go back to the days of the first cellular phones that were as big as house phones. That's what this design is looking like.

  1. MyRightEye

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Oh I want this size

    I find the iPhone too small and the iPad too big. A larger iphone means more accurate typing, and that's what I want.

  1. SierraDragon

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Me too

    The existing iPhone is just a tad bit too small for my eyes and fat fingers. It fits fine in my pocket with a substantial Otter case on it. If the iPhone 5 does not fit in my pocket with an Otter case I have no problem doing without the case, but I really _need_ more screen real estate.

    It looks like some kind of upgrade of the current size will also be available for those who prefer smaller.

  1. BigMac2

    Joined: Dec 1969


    What about the iPod Touch?

    But look like an iPod touch case to me...

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