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We’ve been hearing rumors of a refreshed “iPhone 4S” for months, with at least one analyst now believing that may be the only new model introduced this year. While the world debates whether or not we’ll see an iPhone 5 this year, AT&T has quietly slipped some new cases into their stores which may hold a clue.
BGR is reporting that new iPhone 4 cases are arriving at AT&T stores with a suspiciously larger hole in the back for the camera and LED flash. Popular case manufacturers Otterbox and Speck are among them, and when put side by side it’s pretty clear that something is going on here since the camera hole is easily twice as large as was necessary for the iPhone 4.
The leading speculation is that these cases are intended to be compatible with both the current iPhone 4 and some kind of “iPhone 4S” that Apple has yet to announce, presumably using the extra space for a better LED flash -- perhaps even a dual LED flash, which would help eliminate the garish look of photos taken with a single LED flash.
BGR originally noted that the camera holes were larger due to the “upgraded internals and a better camera” but readers quickly noted that a better camera (the next iPhone is rumored to jump to eight megapixels) wouldn’t necessarily need a larger hole in the case -- that is, unless it had a bigger or different flash, perhaps.
A number of early cases for the iPhone 4 were plagued by image fogging because the hole around the camera area wasn’t large enough, which caused the flash burst to leak back into the camera lens. However, most case manufacturers have long ago addressed that issue, which makes the arrival of these updated cases with even larger holes an interesting development to say the least.
Follow this article’s author, J.R. Bookwalter on Twitter
(Image courtesy of BGR)