A leaked image may confirm some of the rumors we’ve been hearing about the upcoming iPhone. The image shows the rear panel of the new iPhone (probably not the “iPhone 5”).
There are a few things this image (assuming it’s genuine, of course) tell us about the new iPhone. First, this is plainly a metal shell. According to iFixyouri, the panel is made of aluminum. No glass, and no liquidmetal. Second, it confirms the smaller dock connector, and it appears that the speakers will be upgrade. Third, it looks like the new iPhone will indeed be thinner and taller, though it’s tough to tell from the photo. That means that the iPhone really will be getting a larger screen. Finally, it looks like the new iPhone will be keeping the same basic form factor as the iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S. Again, it’s hard to tell from the photo, but it appears that the new iPhone will have the same squared-off design as its predecessors, rather than adopting a teardrop design or the curved back panel of the iPhone 3G and 3GS.
And now for the disclaimer: while there’s a decent chance this component is genuine, there’s also a chance it isn’t, or that it’s a component for a prototype iPhone that won’t actually be the version that Apple launches later this year (probably October). As always, we’ll just have to wait and see.