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The next iPhone, dubbed the "iPhone 5," is hotly rumored to be packing a slightly larger, near-four inch display, and cases cropping up in the UK serve only to corroborate this notion. Apple has stuck religiously to the 3.5-inch display on each iPhone iteration hitherto, but with many rival smartphone vendors following the ethos that bigger is better in terms of the screen, Apple finally appears to have caved.

Most of the intel on the upcoming device so far has been based on leaked hardware and cases, and the very latest seem to fit the billing just nicely. As has been discussed in the past, the case leaks are often based on rumors, so while it’s encouraging in a sense that the protective cases depict what we’re all expecting anyway, it cannot necessarily be taken as a sign that the longer form factor and larger screen is for certain.

They’ve surfaced via Mobile Fun UK’s undisclosed  sources, and as you can see from the snaps, they also indicate the other hardware changes purported to be arriving, such as the smaller dock connector. Up until this point, the 30-pin port has been a permanent fixture, but the 19-pin port will now free up plenty of interior space while maintaining the same functionality.

 

In general, the next-generation device won’t significantly change aesthetically, but given the success of both the iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S, there’s no real reason for Apple to make any drastic alterations from a design point of view. Of course, there will always be those anxious for a design overhaul, but any genuine fan of technology will appreciate that even now – two years after the iPhone 4′s release – the iPhone 4/4S are among the easiest on the eye in the smartphone market.

The cases themselves are pretty funky, including kickstands allowing users to watch landscape movies without having to support the device with glasses of water (maybe that’s just me?). Usually, early cases are cheap, mass-produced, and don’t offer much in the way of substantial protection, but these ones look a lot more like the ones we’re used to purchasing at the Apple Retail Store and other third-party retailers.

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