Photos of what claim to be casing components for the long-rumoured iPad mini have surfaced online.
Photos of the iPad mini cases were posted on a Chinese blog Sina Weibo - hardly a trusted source of Apple news, but as we get closer to the rumoured September 12 Apple launch event, all bets are off. Intriguingly, these cases suggest that there's no rear camera on the iPad mini, its shell a seamless slab of the Apple-staple anodised aluminium. There's nothing here to suggest there won't be a user-facing sensor, though, which is a dead cert at this point.
Asus recently confirmed that a rear camera was left out of the Google Nexus 7 in order to keep costs low, but could Apple be making the same move? A metallic construction suggests the iPad mini may not quite reach the low price of Google's tablet, but with a lower-resolution screen the small iPad won't need as advanced a GPU as the "new iPad" in order to keep up with it.
Apple is yet to confirm that the iPad mini exists, but the sheer volume of news surrounding the small tablet suggests it is on the way. But will it launch alongside the iPhone 5 on September 12? Place your bets in the comments.