updated 01:54 pm EDT, Tue May 29, 2012
Photos depict metal back, smaller dock connector
Two separate websites say they have obtained photos of the body of the next-generation iPhone. Images supplied to Boy Genius Report come from a repair company, uBreakiFix, and show a back combining metal and glass with decorative trim. The cutout for the camera module is thought to be larger, but the most significant changes may be at the bottom of the new case, which features a new, smaller dock connector, a relocated headphone jack, and redesigned speaker and microphone ports.
The dock connector change has been rumored for some time. If true it will force many third-party companies to retool their accessories; it should also allow Apple more space inside of devices however, and the possibility of creating smaller accessories. Moving the headphone jack would also demand accessory changes, but would at least be consistent with design of the current iPod touch.
Photos provided to 9to5Mac from supply chain sources show similar parts, but both black and white trim options, including front panels as well. These are said to support the notion of a taller, 4-inch screen -- technically, 3.999-inch -- running at a 1136x640 resolution, slightly higher than that of the iPhone 4S. The front camera has shifted to top-center, just above the earpiece.
The site adds that the new phone's antenna band appears to have been molded into the metal backplates, creating even more interior space. A new gap has opened up between the camera lens and the LED flash, which is speculated as possibly being a place to move the second mic, improving audio during video recording.
When Apple might ship a new iPhone is uncertain, but most reports have pointed to September or October. Since no reports have emerged of Apple going into full-scale production, the company at least appears to have permanently ditched the summer launch window it used for all iPhone models before the 4S.