The idea of a next-generation iPhone shaped like a teardrop dates back to a report published by This is my next in late-April, describing a 3.7-inch iPhone with edge-to-edge glass and striking new design shape akin to the late-2010 MacBook Air, meaning thicker to thinner from top to bottom. Piggy-backing on the story, agile Asian vendors followed up with teardrop-shaped cases. Or so we thought.

While we will ‘talk iPhone’ next Tuesday, M.I.C. Gadget reveals that an iPhone 5 prototype had recently gone missing from the Shenzhen district. “This should explain why we are seeing a whole lot of iPhone 5 cases in China today”, the publication concludes.

Much like the widely publicized iPhone 4 prototype that had gone missing at a German beer bar in California, the missing handset was camouflaged in an iPhone 4-like case (strange because the teardrop phone is wider and taller). Inside: A test model with a finalized iPhone 5 chassis sporting the teardrop design. The publication then builds on this tip by speculating that the device houses “slightly modified iPhone 4 electronics” plus the A4 chip “and even the same amount of memory”.

If this is true, then the tear drop iPhone may be the low end device, and the one inside the iPhone 4 case might be the high end.

Apple may have two iPhones up its sleeve after all – an iPhone-4 like iPhone 5 with the A5 chip with 1GB of RAM and eight-megapixel back camera and a brand new device with the teardrop design and thinner appearance. We also know Apple’s management wouldn’t launch such a device unless it was an “innovative, category-killer experience” type of product. Unless, of course, it’s just a concept Apple’s been exploring only to scrap it later. So where do we go from here? Two iPhones or just one come next Tuesday? Meet us in comments.

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