The Apple fanboi universe flipped out again today with new clues to the iPhone 5 design: a batch of case designs from the major manufacturer Case Mat. This seems to happen about once a week. A case company releases some images of a new design for what looks to be some kind of iPhone we haven't seen before, and assumptions are made about what new functions may be in the new phone, like archaeologists studying some strange ruin dug up in a field. The assumptions rest on top of a very big assumption that the case companies have privileged access to Apple's design specs, a sort of sneak preview that the general public is forbidden from seeing. The reality is that this is not true.
Like everyone else, case makers are making it up as they go. "Case Mate's iPhone 5 page cites a bunch of rumors and reports, so it seems like the company went ahead and based its designs on speculation as opposed to official blueprints from Apple," explains Steve Kovach at Business Insider. "We've spoken to iPhone accessory makers in the past who told us it's very rare for Apple to give this kind of early access to a new device's design. Case Mate pulled the photos not long after they went live and their site now redirects to a sign up page for notifications about iPhone 5 products. (We smell a marketing stunt.)
This doesn't mean the features being mentioned don't sound pretty sweet. We're hoping that Apple makes the iPhone 5 look like a mini iPad. You could collect a bunch of them and a couple of iPads and dress them up like a little gadget family. You may or may not be able to use the conceptual cases that may or may not actually reveal details about the iPhone 5.