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Video shows purported next-gen iPhone 'uni-body' backplate in detail


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A new video has surfaced of the alleged next-generation iPhone, featuring a side-by-side comparison of an iPhone 4S and a backplate identical to a part seen in previously leaked photos.

The video from wireless parts company ETrade Supply (via CydiaBlog) gives a highly detailed look at what appears to be an aluminum backplate first seen in May, lending further evidence that the part may be legitimate.

Highlighting the clip is a comparison between the allegedly new part and the chassis and back glass of the current iPhone 4S. The side-by-side clearly illustrates how Apple's next iPhone could sport what the narrator calls a "uni-body" design that does away with the back glass in favor of a metal chassis and front glass configuration. This would be more of a regression to the design of the iPhone 3G/3GS that had the internal components nestled in a rounded polycarbonate shell, however the purportedly leaked chassis allows for a markedly svelte profile not seen in current Apple handsets. The new component is so slim that it is noticeably thinner than the iPhone 4/4S metal mid-section alone.

Besides the obvious height and depth differences, the physical button layout seems to remain unchanged with the holes for volume adjustment and power maintaining their relative positioning to the top of handset when compared to Apple's current iPhone. Also unchanged are the dual-antennas on the top and bottom of the device that were first introduced in the iPhone 4S.

As the narrator moves on to other sections of the phone back, he notes that the SIM card tray found in the leaked unit is noticeably smaller than the piece found in existing iPhone 4S hardware, thus making the two parts incompatible. The tray in the video seems to be the part seen in early May and could feasibly fit the new "nano-SIM" format recently adopted by the European Telecommunications Standards Institute.

Also making an appearance is the much-rumored "mini dock" at the bottom of the unit which is situated next to revised speaker and mic grills and a newly-positioned headphone jack.

Thursday's hands-on comes less than a week after a video was released claiming to feature the next-gen smartphone's front glass. It is unclear how thick the assembled shell would be if the two sections were put together, assuming that the two match at all, but Apple is rumored to be using in-cell display technology to keep displacement down. Disregarding the thickness of the panel, both leaked parts point to a display with a diagonal length in excess of 4-inches which is consistent with whispers saying the new iPhone will boast a bigger screen.

Apple is widely rumored to debut its new handset this fall sometime between September and October.