It's not Christmas morning for you yet, iPhone fans, but you might have a sneak preview picture of that certain special toy you can't wait to unwrap. Photos surfaced online over the weekend supposedly showing Mac and iOS lovers' latest, greatest, most sought-after Holy Grail -- the new iPhone 5.
Okay, it is not actually a photo of the iPhone 5 -- the photo actually just shows the front and back of a casing for an alleged iPhone 5. One side is black and the other white, suggesting that the iPhone 5 will be available in white.
The leaked iPhone 5 photos are available on Photobucket under the username "meme_168". There is no text or supporting information. There is no indication of how this meme_168 individual would have access to the iPhone 5 manufacturing process. It's just a photo with the name "newiphone", and not a shred of supporting proof.
If the evidence is so flimsy and unconfirmed, why should anyone's panties be in a bunch over these photos? Because the phone depicted is completely consistent with all of the most prominent and widely-accepted iPhone 5 rumors. If "consistent with rumors" meets your threshold for credibility, then go ahead and put your faith in the accuracy of these images.
As eWeek points out, these photos are consistent with rumors of a larger, four-inch screen on the iPhone 5. The Los Angeles Times notes that the front-facing camera on this supposed iPhone 5 is placed above the speaker, not to the left as on current iPhone models.
It's a pretty commonly accepted rumor that the iPhone 5 is already in production in China. Frankly, it would have to be if Apple were to be able to release the iPhone 5 in time for the holiday season. So I am going to go ahead and believe that particular rumor.
If the device is in production, it's possible that this meme_168 character on Photobucket works in the production system -- or has a contact in the production system. There are no details that would debunk the claim that the photos depict a next-gen iPhone. Of course, we won't know for sure what that phone will really look like until an Apple employee accidentally leaves one in a bar.
The Chinese ecommerce retail site Taobao is already taking pre-orders for the iPhone 5, and has photos of what the device will supposedly look like. I sure can't navigate their Chinese language site, but Emirates 24/7 could -- and they've posted a slideshow of iPhone 5 pictures claiming to depict the actual, finished product.
So we may now know what the highly-anticipated iPhone 5 will look like. Either that, or some very clever individual has pulled off the greatest iPhone hoax in years.