It happens every time: When Apple drops hints it has a new product about to hit the market — in this case the iPhone 5 — the blogosphere lights up.
The new phone, if you believe what they're saying…will be out Sept. 5…will have a rounded back…a larger screen…won't disconnect calls if you touch the edges…will fly — well, it won't fly, but the rumors do.
Seth Weintraub, who writes for 9to5mac.com, says, "a tipster sent us some pictures of what he now thinks is the iPhone 5. He caught what he said was likely an Apple employee hunched over the device on the way home from work in San Francisco earlier this week. He told us he was able to get a very good look at the device but the pictures he snapped 'didn’t do it justice.'"
(Image courtesy 9to5mac.com. Click on it to enlarge.) "We aren’t certain if this is legitimate or not but it is too thin and flat to be an iPhone 3GS and too rounded to be an iPhone 4," writes Weintraub. "The black back with Apple logo would seem to rule out an iPod touch. Our tipster is all but certain it was a new Apple product and the iPhone 5 would be the most likely scenario."
Weintraub said we were welcome to share the image with you. "We've heard that the iPhone 5 will be a half inch longer and wider while becoming thinner as well," he said in an email.
A British blog, Mobile Fun, says it's been leaked "a design document for an iPhone 5 case, sourced to Mobile Fun from a Chinese case manufacturer. Luckily for us, the image shows the iPhone 5 and reveals some of the massive changes that have been made with the latest edition of Apples iPhone." It says the phone's touch screen has been lengthened to 4 inches from 3.5, though the phone itself is no larger. The screen, instead, will stretch from edge to edge of the phone, and the rear panel "curves gently back around its edges, much like the iPhone 3G."
These things happen whenever Apple goes through one of its carefully-organized product rollouts. You may recall the one famous slip last year when an early iPhone 4 was found in a bar in Redwood City, Calif., and quickly bought up and described in detail by Gizmodo.com. Depending on where you look online, the leaked image above is either a similar accident, a decoy, or a picture that actually shows an old iPhone sold several years ago.
What does Apple say? They just called back — very friendly — to say, "We don't comment on rumor or speculation."
Greg Kumparak of TechCrunch had tongue planted deeply in cheek: "iPhone fans, start drooling. Skeptics, have your grains of salt at the ready."