That time of year is fast rolling around, when Apple fans start to get itchy feet as new product launches are impending. We’re expecting a new iPhone, updated iPods, and possibly even a new iPad Mini.
Apple is already getting ready for new launches, as several recent leaks of prototype products have shown. Firstly an ‘engineering sample’ of the iPhone 5 has been leaked. What we see is nothing like the finished product; this is the size and shape of the new iPhone but milled from a solid block of aluminium.
What the design shows us is the same design as featured in recent 3d renders, which were created going on parts that leaked online. We see the back of the phone is made up from a large central panel, with thin strips at the top and bottom. There’s a central earpiece above the screen, and the familiar circular home button below it – not the widened button that was rumoured.
Finally, the model has been snapped sitting against a ruler, which confirms to us that the iPhone 5 will be longer and slightly wider. This is to accommodate a larger 4-inch display, which is said to be one of the key features of the new phone.
It’s not just an iPhone Apple is working on though; an iPad Mini is fast becoming one of the most rumoured items to possibly come out of Cupertino. The same site, GottaBeMobile, obtained pictures of an early 3D model of the product, which looks incredibly like the real iPad. Machined from some sort of orange plastic, the Mini model features the same design cues as the original iPad but is a fair bit smaller – 7.85-inches is expected to be the screen size.
When sat side by side the iPad Mini is thinner than the current iPad 3, and features the same tapered design on the back. What’s interesting is that the model includes the dock, which happens to be the same smaller dock design that’s rumoured to first appear on the iPhone 5. Whereas the iPad has its dock on the bottom edge in portrait mode, this model shows the iPad Mini having its dock on the side.
Of course, these models may not even be from Apple – the legitimacy of both is yet to be proved. However, we think the iPad Mini model looks pretty bang on to us, even if it’s a very early prototype that may look different from the finished product. Hopefully we’ll see the real device very soon.