New photos of a claimed metal iPad mini back plate surface as we head into the home stretch for Apple’s September 12th media event where we expect to see the iPhone 5.
The latest analyst information suggests the iPad Mini won’t arrive until later this fall, possibly at its own event, thanks to difficulty producing the screens for the smaller iPad.
In the latest leak from 163.com. a Chinese tech site, we get a look at what the site claims is the metal backplate for the iPad Mini. This leak shows a more finished look at the back of an iPad Mini with the Apple Logo and iPad stamped on the back.
If this new leak is real, it provides three key pieces of information.
iPad Mini Size
The backplate is using a smaller dock connector, which we expect to arrive on the iPhone 5 and on all iOS products moving forward. This image offers a close look at the part and the speaker grill. What we also see is a thicker iPad Mini casing than expected. The iPad Mini engineering sample we shared in July, and a similar iPad Mini sample shown at IFA 2012 both appear smaller.
The leaked image below, which shows a camera opening also shows the size versus an iPad and includes what appears to be an iPhone 5 engineering sample off to the top.
iPad Mini Camera
The new leak doesn’t provide any details about what type of camera the iPad Mini might use, but there is an opening for a camera on the upper back of the case. The cutout is near volume and orientation lock cutouts, and only offers a single hole. This means there will not likely be a flash. A rear facing camera of any kind is nice for users that want to take photos of notes and scan barcodes. The image also shows
No Room for 3G or 4G LTE
If true, this is one of the most disappointing rumors we’ve seen yet, but the site claims that there is no SIM card slot. With any luck this is the back plate for a WiFi only model, as a 4G LTE iPad Mini is a product many of us are hoping for.
The iPad Mini may end up as a repacked iPad 2, allowing Apple to use older hardware in a smaller package to keep costs down. It’s possible this means the device will be limited to WiFi or to slower 3G connectivity at launch, but no leaks address cellular connectivity for the iPad Mini yet.
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