Is This What the iPhone 5 Will Look Like?

A new report from This is my next reveals some interesting rumors about the iPhone 5. According to Joshua Topolsky (the former editor-in-chief of Engadget), the iPhone 5 will in fact be a significant redesign of the current iPhone 4.

Topolsky doesn’t cite specific sources, but he claims that the iPhone 5 will have a design very similar to that of the fourth-generation iPod touch. Engadget originally said that the iPhone 5 would be a major evolution of the iPhone 4, and this report from This is my next corroborates that claim.

This is my next produced the above mockup to visualize what Topolsky and others are hearing about the iPhone 5. The image is not a factual representation, but an educated guess based on what has been divulged to Topolsky and team.

Overall, the design of the next iPhone is supposed to resemble a “teardrop” shape, similar to that of the MacBook Air. The device will be thinner with a 3.7 inch screen and look “more like the iPod touch than the iPhone 4.”

The prototypes that Apple is supposedly testing have a redesigned home button with gesture integration. We’ve already heard a rumor that the next iPhone will not have a home button, but this hybrid solution makes more sense.

“In a sketch supplied to us by a source (on which the image above is based), the home button is doing double duty as a gesture area; this falls in line with testing we’ve seen for gestures on the iPad, and our sources say that gestures are definitely coming in a future version of iOS. The home button will likely be enlarged, but not scrapped altogether.”

This is my next claims that the iPhone 5’s screen will “occupy the entire (or near to it) front of the phone, meaning almost no bezel.” An edge-to-edge screen has also been reported from another source, so This is my next’s claim doesn’t totally come out of nowhere.

If the screen size does increase, Topolsky points out that Apple could stay within the “retina display” expectations by keeping the resolution to 312dpi.

Topolsky’s report also makes some claims about NFC and inductive charging, but those statements are based out of total speculation.

“While the art we’ve seen shows some form of inductive or touch charging, our sources can’t confirm whether or not Apple’s working on its own version of cable-free juicing. There’s also a “swipe area” shown in the drawing which appears to be on the bottom and / or top of the device — that could very well be an NFC point, but that’s pure speculation on our part.”

This is my next clarifies that this report is not based off confirmed fact,

“Now, keep in mind that this info isn’t fact — we’re getting lots of threads from lots of places and trying to make sense of the noise. The versions of devices our sources are seeing could be design prototypes and not production-ready phones. Still, there are strong indications that Apple will surprise a public that’s expecting a bump more along the lines of the 3G to 3GS — and this is some insight into where those designs might be headed.”

The team at This is my next has a good track record, and Joshua Topolsky isn’t one to just blow smoke. Although this information could very well be based off prototype units that never see the light of day, it’s interesting to see the possibilities that exist for the iPhone 5.

The most intriguing part of this report is the gesture-sensitive home button. It seems like a pretty original idea, and it wouldn’t be past Apple to morph the current home button into a more touch-interactive experience. Altering the home button with gestures could be part of the plan to abandon the home button entirely in a future generation of the iPhone.

What do you think? Do you think we’ll see this design and feature set in the iPhone 5?