Apple Planning Completely Redesigned iPhone for Fall 2012 Launch?
BGR reports that Apple is planning to launch a completely redesigned iPhone in the fall of next year, following the trend set by the iPhone 4S of new hardware being released later in the year as opposed to the mid-year timeframe used previously.
According the report, the next iPhone will utilize an aluminum back panel rather than the glass found on the iPhone 4 and 4S. The new design will reportedly also see the incorporation of a rubber or plastic bezel covering similar to that used on Apple's iPhone bumpers, with the covering serving to protect the device's antennas from direct skin contact.
We have also learned that Apple is planning to use a rubber or plastic material — similar to the material used in the company’s bumper cases — that will be built into the new iPhone case. In all likelihood, this material will be used as a bezel surrounding the front edge of the phone (like the iPhone 3GS bezel) and it will serve two purposes. First, it will join the glass iPhone face with a new aluminum back plate. It will also cover a redesigned antenna system that surrounds the device, allowing Apple to build the rear case out of aluminum without having to use a large plastic insert above the antennas as the company does on its iPad 2 Wi-Fi + 3G.
BGR has a mixed track record when it comes to hardware rumors, coming relatively close on Apple's late 2011 iPhone lineup while missing with a claim of a redesigned WiMAX iPhone 5 exclusive to Sprint.