The Strange Case of a New iPhone 5 Case Rumor

iPhone 5 case tipster

The store that M.I.C. claims to have received this tip

An Asian iPhone 5 rumor blog is reporting that Foxconn “lost” an iPhone 5 prototype in China, leading to a flurry of iPhone 5 cases revealed ahead of the product’s launch. Does this story add up?

The truth is a great thing, because it typically makes the most logical sense. The converse is true about lies: they often require one to suspend disbelief in order to believe an otherwise fantastic lie.

A new report from M.I.C. weaves a sordid, complex tale of how the iPhone 5 rumor mill became populated with el cheap-o iPhone 5 cases this summer: an iPhone 5 prototype was supposedly lost or stolen from the Foxconn plant in Schenzen province, China. The problem with the M.I.C. article is that it just doesn’t track logically.

Let’s go through it.

First, let’s talk about M.I.C.’s source, which they claim to be a “supplier.” M.I.C. makes little mention of this mystery man’s (or woman’s) credentials, and the story is being told is second hand — the iPhone 5 prototype did not fall into the supplier’s hands, but someone else’s. The only other glimpse we get of the source is his or her place of business, a small, unassuming booth in what looks to be a mall or shopping center. We’ve embedded it stage left.

Whether or not you feel like the source’s profile is trustworthy enough or not, the story itself is convoluted and hard to track from my perspective. This is what they tell us: “The missing prototype is said to have been enclosed in a case to disguise it as a current-generation iPhone 4–which brings to mind the iPhone 4 prototype acquired by Gizmodo that was camouflaged as an iPhone 3GS.”

Indeed, it does sound remarkably like what happened last year with the iPhone 4, as this is obviously how Apple allows prototypes of its new iPhone to get tested in the real world. But then M.I.C. admits exactly what I thought of immediately: “How Apple achieved that with the iPhone 5 supposedly wider and longer than the current iPhone 4 is a point to ponder.”

Well, yeah! Duh!



iphone 5 case and iphone 4If the iPhone 4 doesn’t fit into the iPhone 5 cases, then how did Apple hide the new iPhone 5 in an iPhone 4 chassis? To quote Johnny Cochran: “If the iPhone 5 don’t fit, it must not be legit!”What strange, parallel universe are we living in here, where an albeit thinner but larger teardrop-shaped iPhone 5 got stuffed inside the much smaller iPhone 4 fuselage? After this, M.I.C. states, “It is said to be a test model with a finalized iPhone 5 chassis featuring the tear-drop design.” So, this would mean two things: that the iPhone 5 prototype — large-screened, teardrop form factor and all — broke the laws of physics and was fitted into the smaller-sized iPhone 4 form factor (impossible, based on the images we’ve seen of smaller iPhone 4 units placed inside the purported iPhone 5 cases), or that the prototype only housed the new iPhone 5 guts, and there was no new form factor, at which point, all of those advance iPhone 5 cases were just “educated” guesses.

Or maybe “uneducated” guesses.

But M.I.C. doesn’t stop there in confusing the heck out of us. They go on to explain, “However, the interesting thing about it is that it apparently houses what we assume to be slightly modified iPhone 4 electronics with components such as the A4 chip and even the same amount of memory.” This would mean that the purported iPhone 5 teardrop prototype that was lost/stolen is the mirror-opposite of everything we’ve heard lately: instead of it being a refreshed iPhone 4 form factor with the A5 chip, it’s a new form factor with the A4 chip. Is any of this making sense?

M.I.C. concludes its argument for how this story must be true by saying, “What seems to strongly support the claim that an iPhone 5 prototype with the final chassis design has indeed landed into the hands of case manufacturers is that, weeks ahead of the iPhone 5 launch, we are already seeing a plethora of iPhone 5 cases for sale from many case manufacturers. Some even claim to have shipped “thousands” of these cases.” So, in the end, this story gives no logical evidence of how the iPhone 5 teardrop shape was revealed to case manufacturers, however it simply concludes that because some iPhone 5 cases have been already manufactured, that the story must be true — even if it makes no sense.

I’ve said before that, in the end, the iPhone could indeed be a form factor overhaul. But even a development like that will not prove a shoddy report like this to be true.

If I’m missing something here, please open my eyes.


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