Thursday 23 November 2017

iPhone 5 rumours fuelled by accessories firm

Shane Richmond

Has an accessories manufacturer given away the shape of the next iPhone? Plenty of bloggers think so, based on a product page published on the Case-Mate website.

The website was updated to show what are apparently cases for Apple’s forthcoming iPhone 5. The page was later removed, which served only to fuel the speculation from Apple-watchers.

The new case appeared to be designed for a device with curved edges, more like the iPod touch than the iPhone 4. It also appeared wider than the iPhone 4 and Case-Mate’s mock-up had an aluminium back.

What does this mean? Possibly nothing. This is the problem with iPhone guessing games, nobody really knows what anybody else knows. Has Apple tipped off Case-Mate about the dimensions of their new device or is Case-Mate guessing? We don’t know and neither of those companies is saying.

I spoke to someone at a Silicon Valley-based accessories company earlier this week who told me that, despite having a close relationship with Apple, they were not given any advance information about forthcoming products. That person, who did not wish to be named, said that the company took an educated guess and developed several prototypes, which would then be refined and put into production once Apple announced its product.

Is that true of all companies? Again, it is hard to say. Certainly, leaked accessories have in the past given clues about forthcoming Apple products but that doesn’t mean that Apple shares information with these companies ahead of release. Indeed, given the tales of secrecy within Apple, it’s hard to imagine that third parties are being let into the company’s secrets.

The secrecy fuels more speculation - yes, like this article - which in turn fuels more speculation. That gets Apple fans excited and frustrates those who don’t think Apple is any more interesting than RIM or Nokia or Hotpoint, for that matter. See the comments below for details.

But for those of you who are wondering what we know about the new iPhone, here it is in a nutshell: almost nothing. It’s not even certain that there will be one though, for a number of reasons, it’s very likely. Apple has not invited the media to attend a launch event, hasn’t announced a release date and hasn’t confirmed any specifications.

We should know more very soon. In the meantime, expect the rumours to keep coming.

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