Photos, video show highly suspect 'iPhone Lite' display and shell with no exterior buttons

Posted:
in iPhone edited May 2014
A series of images and a stylized video hit the Web on Saturday, all purporting to show a buttonless rear shell attached to a display assembly bound for Apple's rumored low-cost "iPhone Lite."

iPhone Lite
Purported "iPhone Lite" (left) next to Apple's current iPhone 5. | Source: Techdy


According to a post on its blog, accessory reseller Techdy claims to have snagged a white copy of the iPhone Lite's rear shell, as well as the device's accompanying 4-inch display, from up-chain supply sources in China. Making the claims highly suspect, however, is a complete lack of physical buttons on the exterior of the chassis.

It should be noted that AppleInsider cannot confirm the veracity of Techdy's report and offers the following information for purposes of discussion only.

Most suspicious of Saturday's images is the absence of any physical control buttons or cutouts on the shell ? even for a power switch ? meaning the sample is either an early working prototype, or, more likely, has been fabricated out of whole cloth.

iPhone Lite
Metal anchoring and EMI shielding shows power button cutout, which is not present on Techdy's shell.


Adding to the confusion, seated within the purported shell is a metal anchor plate meant for internal components. The lining has cutouts for external controls, like volume and power, which is consistent with previous rumored leaks, though Techdy's shell shows only small holes where these ports should be. This could mean the plate was taken from a previously-leaked shell and placed in the fabricated version.

Perhaps giving away the true intentions of the site's post is an Android handset it has for sale called the "Basic Bear," which appears to use a rebranded version of polycarbonate shell detailed in the report.

iPhone Lite
Volume controls replaced by two holes.


Techdy recently opened up shop in April with an open-source game controller for the iPad mini, and as such has no track record in "leaking" Apple products. The company's founders include M.I.C. Gadget's Chris Chang, who has a decent history in reporting on Apple's Far East movements.

AppleInsider was first to share 3D renderings based on iPhone Lite schematics provided by a major iOS device accessory maker in June.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 113
    jason98jason98 Posts: 763member
    No physical (side) buttons => waterproof finally?
  • Reply 2 of 113
    timbittimbit Posts: 331member
    How would you turn it on and off? Volume? Looks a little nicer than the other rumored photos
  • Reply 3 of 113
    droidftwdroidftw Posts: 1,009member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Timbit View Post



    How would you turn it on and off? Volume? Looks a little nicer than the other rumored photos


     


    It's possible to create a smartphone that turns on by swiping (or some form of interaction) across the touchscreen, but obviously the more likely scenario is that they will have buttons when they're released.

  • Reply 4 of 113
    jungmarkjungmark Posts: 6,664member
    Fake Apple hates its users by removing buttons!
  • Reply 5 of 113
    theproftheprof Posts: 2member
    Can't help but wonder if they're going to replace the iPod Touch with something like this. Something that would cost the same as an iPod Touch but has the option of turning on the cellular radio through a carrier. To be honest, I don't know if all that would work out (technology wise), but I guess I'm skeptical of them doing a cheap phone without some kind of nuance to it.
  • Reply 6 of 113
    gazoobeegazoobee Posts: 3,754member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by jungmark View Post



    Fake Apple hates its users by removing buttons!


     


    I think you're the only one on the thread so far that's got it.  It's sure looking like those photos of coloured back shells are completely fake at this point.  


    Even the earlier photos don't actually show the volume buttons or any of the cut-outs.  


     


    There might be a real "iPhone cheapo" and it might match the schematics that were leaked and look very similar to this product, but the thing being shown here seems likely to be totally fake right now.  


     


    What I find interesting is that if they really did copy the "real" shell of the "real" new cheapass iPhone … then their "bear" phone would be completely illegal as a one for one copy of the original.  If instead it has a different arrangement of buttons, then they could get away with it.  That might be what's happening here.  Just a very clever and intricate deception in order to sell their crap Android product.  It's almost a more interesting mystery than whether "iPhone cheapo" actually exists. 

  • Reply 7 of 113
    maccherrymaccherry Posts: 924member
    A budget iPhone is stupid.
    No matter what the phone cost you'll eventually be able to get it for next to nothing with a two year commitment by any of the number of pimps, cough, I mean cellular providers. Look at the iPhone 4. Walmart is giving it out for zero dollrs or a penny with a two year commitment.
  • Reply 8 of 113
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member
    no exterior buttons

    Ah, now we know what concessions Apple had to make to get the iPhone cheap enough for morons to afford it.
    droidftw wrote: »
    It's possible to create a smartphone that turns on by swiping (or some form of interaction) across the touchscreen...

    Well, that's dumb. It's never actually off, then.
  • Reply 9 of 113
    eriamjheriamjh Posts: 1,113member
    While it would be really cool if apple invented some kind of ultrasonic finger-sensing technology, These are still likely unfinished backshells. The holes mean nothing to us. The shape is likely a version of the next iPhone. Cheaper to make thanmachined aluminum, Apple may have found a way to make plastic cool again.
  • Reply 10 of 113
    droidftwdroidftw Posts: 1,009member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post



    Well, that's dumb. It's never actually off, then.


     


    Some people love it.  I'm not one of them either, but to each their own.

  • Reply 11 of 113

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by maccherry View Post



    A budget iPhone is stupid.

    No matter what the phone cost you'll eventually be able to get it for next to nothing with a two year commitment by any of the number of pimps, cough, I mean cellular providers. Look at the iPhone 4. Walmart is giving it out for zero dollrs or a penny with a two year commitment.


    You do realize that carrier subsidies are not available on all carriers or in all parts of the world, right?


     


    A budget iPhone isn't for AT&T or Verizon customers. It's for people in India or China or third-world countries who want a cell phone but can't afford to buy a $600-plus iPhone.

  • Reply 12 of 113
    gazoobeegazoobee Posts: 3,754member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by maccherry View Post



    A budget iPhone is stupid.

    No matter what the phone cost you'll eventually be able to get it for next to nothing with a two year commitment by any of the number of pimps, cough, I mean cellular providers. Look at the iPhone 4. Walmart is giving it out for zero dollrs or a penny with a two year commitment.


     


    Try to think outside of the boundaries of your home town, Walmart, and the United States.  


     


    A truck driver in Indonesia needs a smartphone nowadays as well.  He/she probably needs it to be cheap, durable, off-contract, and have a battery that lasts a long, long time. 

  • Reply 13 of 113
    jungmarkjungmark Posts: 6,664member
    gazoobee wrote: »
    Try to think outside of the boundaries of your home town, Walmart, and the United States.  

    A truck driver in Indonesia needs a smartphone nowadays as well.  He/she probably needs it to be cheap, durable, off-contract, and have a battery that lasts a long, long time. 

    Who is to say he would be Apple's customer?
  • Reply 14 of 113
    iqatedoiqatedo Posts: 1,595member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post



    ...

    Well, that's dumb. It's never actually off, then.


     


    While I'm not supporting the rumour or advocating a lack of physical buttons, it is possible to employ a fabulously low-powered supervisory chip for the sole purpose of detecting a touch (or movement). Battery life would not be affected noticeably. False activations might be a problem though - my pocket once phoned my sister-in-law. Quite specific input parameters could alleviate that risk.

  • Reply 15 of 113
    zozmanzozman Posts: 391member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Tallest Skil View Post



    now we know what concessions Apple had to make to get the iPhone cheap enough for morons to afford it.


     


    Yeah, those people are morons for being poor...they should prioritize phones over food & rent...image

  • Reply 16 of 113
    blackbookblackbook Posts: 1,361member



    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Gazoobee View Post


     


    I think you're the only one on the thread so far that's got it.  It's sure looking like those photos of coloured back shells are completely fake at this point.  


    Even the earlier photos don't actually show the volume buttons or any of the cut-outs.  


     


    There might be a real "iPhone cheapo" and it might match the schematics that were leaked and look very similar to this product, but the thing being shown here seems likely to be totally fake right now.  


     


    What I find interesting is that if they really did copy the "real" shell of the "real" new cheapass iPhone … then their "bear" phone would be completely illegal as a one for one copy of the original.  If instead it has a different arrangement of buttons, then they could get away with it.  That might be what's happening here.  Just a very clever and intricate deception in order to sell their crap Android product.  It's almost a more interesting mystery than whether "iPhone cheapo" actually exists. 



     


     


    ^^^This!


     


    When I first started watching the video I was convinced this could be the real deal, but when they got to their Android knockoff the whole thing smelled of a money grabbing headline stealing HOAX.


     


    I hope Techdy enjoys their 15 minutes of fame. They'll be proven wrong shortly.

  • Reply 17 of 113
    alex101alex101 Posts: 40member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by maccherry View Post



    A budget iPhone is stupid.

    No matter what the phone cost you'll eventually be able to get it for next to nothing with a two year commitment by any of the number of pimps, cough, I mean cellular providers. Look at the iPhone 4. Walmart is giving it out for zero dollrs or a penny with a two year commitment.


    While subsidized phones along with a two year contract are very common in the US/Canada, a majority of people in Europe pay upfront for a smartphone and go with a cheap, often prepaid contract. I think if they can hit a €499 price with a budget iPhone then there's a huge audience in Europe and highly probable in other regions as well (India, China et. al.)


     


    Just for the record: an iPhone 5 16GB is still priced around €600 in Germany, while the S4 dropped to under €500 now. If a budget iPhone can compete with the S4 on price, chances are it will take a huge chunk out of Samsung's sales given the still remarkably strong Apple image and desire for their products.

  • Reply 18 of 113
    stelligentstelligent Posts: 2,680member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post



    A series of images and a stylized video hit the Web on Saturday, all purporting to show a buttonless rear shell attached to a display assembly bound for Apple's rumored low-cost "iPhone Lite."

    ...

    Most suspicious of Saturday's images is the absence of any physical control buttons or cutouts on the shell ? even for a power switch ? meaning the sample is either an early working prototype, or, more likely, has been fabricated out of whole cloth.

     


    Whole cloth? That sounds even cheaper than plastic.

  • Reply 19 of 113
    solomansoloman Posts: 228member
    Well, that's dumb. It's never actually off, then.

    And a device with a non removable battery is never really off either.
  • Reply 20 of 113
    gazoobeegazoobee Posts: 3,754member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by jungmark View Post





    Who is to say he would be Apple's customer?


     


    Who's to say he/she wouldn't? 

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