Case Company Is Making 50,000 Cases For Mystery Apple Device

Case Company Is Making 50,000 Cases For Mystery Apple Device

Case company Hard Candy is busy manufacturing 50,000 cases for a mystery Apple device.

The device probably looks like the mockup above. It might be the iPhone 5 or a new, bigger iPod touch. It has a 4.44-inch diagonal screen, which is much larger than most observers are expecting for a new iPhone.

Whatever it is, Hard Candy expects Apple CEO Tim Cook to unveil the device at today’s press event. And the company is busy churning out a range of different cases that will be on store shelves when the device ships.

Hard Candy cases says it received identical data about the device from three sources. This is what they heard:

  • Large 4.44-inch screen.
  • It is significantly bigger than the iPhone 4, but the case tapers, making it feel a lot thinner.
  • Large, lozenge-shaped Home button (This is rumored to be integrated with new Assistant function, allowing tasks to be controlled by voice).

Is it the iPhone 5? Could be, but the screen size is much bigger than most observers are expecting. A 4.44-inch screen would make it significantly bigger that the iPhone 4, which has a 3.5-inch diagonal screen. It would be just a bit bigger than the HTC Evo 4G, one of the biggest Android smartphones on the market.

Hard Candy CEO Tim Hickman says it might be a new iPod touch. Maybe it’s an iPad mini: a smaller, cheaper device to rival the 7-inch Kindle that is likely to be a big hit this Christmas?

Whatever it is, only Apple knows for sure. Apple’s CEO Tim Cook is expected to unveil a new iPhone later today.

Trouble is, no one knows what iPhone he will reveal. This year, the rumors are all over the shop. And while there is all kinds of evidence for the iPhone 4S (leaked parts, inventory system details, software references), there’s been nary a peep about the iPhone 5 from the supply chain.

Which makes Hard Candy’s bet a little bit risky.

What Hickman is confident about is the outside dimensions of the device: He is confident enough to start manufacturing 50,000 cases and have them shipped to stores.

Hickman said the company has made similar bets in the past and has been right. If Hard Candy hadn’t already started making the cases, it risked being left out when the device goes on sale. Retailers are going to fill their shelves with whatever cases are available, Hickman explained, and Hard Candy can’t risk being late.

“This is 100% trying to survive in the market,” he said in a phone interview. “You’ve got to get product in quantity on the shelf.”

He said dozens of other case manufacturers are probably also tooling up to make cases for the device.

Asked if he was nervous about betting on an unseen device, he replied:

“We’ve placed our bets,” he said. “We’re excited about it.”

Here are the details of the device expected by Hard Candy:

The mystery device is wider, taller and thinner than the iPhone 4. It has a tapered design which makes it feel very slim. It has a much larger screen than anyone is expecting — 4.44-inches diagonal. The Home button is lozenge-shaped.

Case Company Is Making 50,000 Cases For Mystery Apple Device

The mystery device is 4.83-inches tall, 2.63-inches wide, and .28-inches thick. It is thicker at the top than the bottom. Other external details are similar to the iPhone 4, except the Mute button has been moved to the other side.

Case Company Is Making 50,000 Cases For Mystery Apple Device

Here is how it compares to the iPhone 4. As you can see, it is significantly taller, wider and thinner (.28-inches compared to .37-inches). Plus, it tapers at the bottom, making it even thinner overall.

Case Company Is Making 50,000 Cases For Mystery Apple Device

The gadget’s screen is 4.44-inches diagonal (3.70-inches by 2.46-inches).

Case Company Is Making 50,000 Cases For Mystery Apple Device

Here is how the screen measures up to the iPhone 4, which is 3.63-inches diagonally.

Case Company Is Making 50,000 Cases For Mystery Apple Device

If Hard Candy’s specs are right, the device will look like this iPhone 5 mockup commissioned by MacRumors, but likely be larger.

And here are some of the cases that Hard Candy is busy churning out. It has 14 different designs, including the popular Bubble Shell and Sport Shell cases.

Case Company Is Making 50,000 Cases For Mystery Apple Device

Case Company Is Making 50,000 Cases For Mystery Apple Device

Case Company Is Making 50,000 Cases For Mystery Apple Device

  • Chris Killen

    If this is real, I will welcome it with open arms…and an open wallet.

  • Bryan Tan

    can’t wait !

  • Richard Mears

    Oh dear. What is more likely: That this is really launching today – or Hard Candy just got some great free advertising. Hmmm.

  • Not Retarded Guest

    Why has everyone suddenly become retarded…

  • macintude

    I hope so.

  • Neil Mcvicar

    Meh, iPod Touch 3G/WiFi what else.

  • DownloadRedSnow

    I wanna new iphone design, if tney releasing 4S and have same design as 4 i will never buy it and waiting for 5….
    I don’t need 8 mp camera, i don’t need facetime HD, i don’t need a5 cheap, i wanna new desigen with new feauters……
    If they release 4s, i don’t upgrade my 3g iphone, so i will jist update my ipad 2 ios, and also update my brothers iphone 4
    http://www.iphoneleaks.net/2011/07/do...

  • DownloadRedSnow

    Great

  • Teche21

    Its 0.28-inch thick at top. How thick is it at the bottom?

  • Jack121

    Let’s see if its true this morning!

  • Jack Smith

    Check out this video from Critical Mass! I can’t wait to get my iPhone 5! From the initial Apple email for iPhone 4 release date it took about 3 weeks to release it in stores. Lets see how long it will take for the iPhone 5…

    http:// youtu.be/DRboE_1OfAI

  • jacka122

    thats ip4s mate

  • Erik Nørgaard

    Doubt the iPhone5/4S will have bigger screen with same resolution. 

    What makes sense for a bigger screen would be an HD 1280x720px. An HD display makes sense bringing FaceTime HD to the iPhone, as well as HD video recording and editing and Youtube HD. 

    It turns out that with the current pixel density this is exactly a 4.4″ display, and it fits in the current iPhone form factor with an edge to edge screen – the screen will be about 55x98mm.

  • Barton Lynch

    please be real!

  • Lars Pallesen

    I very much doubt that Apple will make a big ass iPhone as described here. If there’s anything to this rumour it’s more likely a new “jumbo” iPod Touch . That would actually make some sense, seeing as the iPod Touch has turned out to be quite the mobile game console. A 4,4″ screen would further enhance that capacity.

  • Jackz0r

    A 4.44 inch screen at 1280×720 works out to a DPI of 330….almost identical to the current Retina display……plausible considering both LG and Samsung have just launched 720P phones at around this screen size

  • Shaun

    Presumably all these cases have come about from someone at the factory leaking the sizes of the new iPhone and/or iPod Touch. I would not like to be in that guys shoes if these all prove to be wrong given how much money the case manufacturers have already spent.

  • Mnbob1

    I’m betting on it’s a new Touch. Possibly with 3G as in a rumor not long ago. Too small to call it an iPad model, too large to be an iPhone. Designed for those who are in between the other two. It’s probably optimized for Assistant. Maybe it’s the iAssistant! I guess we’ll know in a few hours. If I’m right you can send my free unit as soon as they ship.

  • PedroCaria

    Please, please, please let them keep the same aspect ratio…
    As a developer that would complicate my work right now :-(

  • PedroCaria

    hope it’s more like 1080×720 to keep the same 1.5 aspect ratio, an aspect ratio of 1.77 would be a bit*h and diferent from all the other models.
    iPhone/iPod has a ratio of 1:1.5
    while iPads have 1:1.33
    Adding a 1:1.77 to the mix wouldn’t make the developers happy.

  • God

    I wanna…I wanna…I wanna….all your toys are out of your playpen now. Cry yourself to sleep now child as no one cares to pick them up for you so you can continue to throw them out again.

  • Bluelou65

    i can see apple going with a larger screen if they keep it really thin.  their complaint in the past was that the bigger phones were too “bulky”. If it’s still a thin phone it would work.  i would buy this…….i would buy a 4S too but i would REALLY buy this one.

  • Custom

    Will we be hearing collective tears hitting the floor…..

  • Dan B

    After today I will be relieved to hear NO MORE B.S. stories like this!

  • Ed_Kel

    And yet another story contradicting the rest of them.. Can it be 10AM in California already so bloggers will quit with this shit?

  • cases for iphone 5

    Modular programming wins. You should have written a simple function for screen sizes to keep you safe.

  • tekunoloji

    If this is a larger iPod Touch. I’ll have been right. I called it on BGR.com a long time ago. Everybody mocked me.

  • Figurative

    Oh yeah, like Apple would release an iPod Touch with a bigger, nicer screen than their flagship iPhone product.  Yeah, that’s going to happen.

  • randall

    iPad mini! LOLZ

  • Martin Buckler

    This rumour would be more believable in metric…

  • Wes

    3 more hours and all the speculation will finally be over. iPad mini?!?! Bigger iPod touch and just a speed-bumped iPhone? I highly doubt that. If anything new is coming out, it’ll be for the iPhone and then rolled out to the iPod Touch…NOT the other way around.

  • S. Mulji

    You’re probably right but wouldn’t it be sweet if this was also the design for the new iPhone 5? One can dream.

  • jauhari

    It’s Rumor and we will seen the truth in next hours… 

  • Erik Nørgaard

    iPad and iPod will be merged into one awesome magic device branded the iPød. Something that is neither nor instead of both and.

  • Awwthree

    doing the math, it’s almost exactly 150% more screen area

  • redasian

    LOL… either this stupid company wasted a bunch of money… or this was a clever advertisement trick for them! 

  • 4004

    No way. It will be the old same design today

  • Figurative

    HA !!   So Hard Candy was duped.  The question is… who duped them?  Purposeful disinformation from Apple?  Or some Bozo with a CAD program and a good story?

  • DarkHeartfelt

    Whoops.  I bet they wish they manufactured 50,000 pieces of actual candy.

  • CharliK

    yep. I can’t help wondering if they really have made such cases. Designed them sure, but actually made them. Sometimes tells me they had not. This was just what they were ready to start making the moment Timmy confirmed said device. 

    That and a great way to get some free press. Nothing better than “Case maker confirms design of new device” to get you reprinted everywhere

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About the author

Leander KahneyLeander Kahney is the editor and publisher of Cult of Mac. He is the NYT bestselling author of Jony Ive: The Genius Behind Apple's Greatest Products; Inside Steve’s Brain; Cult of Mac; and Cult of iPod. Leander has written for Wired, MacWeek, Scientific American, and The Guardian in London. Follow Leander on Twitter @lkahney and Facebook.

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