Oh great, it looks like next-generation iPhone part leaks are starting early this year. Apple Bitch points to TVC-Mall, a Chinese parts vendor, who has listed “iPhone 5″ home buttons for sale on its website.
While the buttons look fairly similar to those found on current iOS devices, the vendor claims that they are in fact noticeably different…
From TVC-Mall’s description:
“Are you interested in the iPhone 5 which will come out soon? Different from iPhone 4S 4, the iPhone 5 home button is round in the centre and square outside as the pictures show. The two parts are indivisible.”
A couple of things: For starters, China is known for its bounty of counterfeit Apple products. We wouldn’t be the least bit surprised if these buttons belonged to a black market “iPhone 5″ handset, rather than an actual Apple-made device.
Also, with the next-generation iPhone launch likely 6 months away, it’s doubtful that a third-party parts vendor already has finalized components from a finished product. If anything, these home buttons are more likely from a prototype.
And finally, as MacRumors points out, these could very well be old iPhone home buttons. If the round piece in the middle is the only part that protrudes upward, then the square outer-bezel would be invisible to the end user — like it is now.
Regardless, this still doesn’t speak well for the rumors of a completely redesigned handset. Until we start seeing tick-tack shaped capacitive home buttons and 4-inch display panels surface, speculation of a revamped iPhone will continue to be unwarranted.