Everyone's Hoping This Ugly iPhone XI Leak is Wrong

By Holly Brockwell on at

Apparently, 2019 is the year of the hideous camera layout.

First we had the Nokia 9 PureView leak, which made us a bit queasy with its trypophobia-inducing multi-lens design:

And now, unusually, we've got an alleged iPhone leak – supposedly a render of the upcoming iPhone XI, or whatever this year's model ends up called:

Once you've turned your screen brightness up high enough to see any detail in all that black, you'll notice that the three-lens enclosure has a horrible, unsymmetrical design that seems very un-Apple to us.

There are four big elements in the rounded square enclosure: three lenses and a flash, plus a little microphone in the bottom right corner. Why not put them in a nice balanced layout like Huawei's dice-esque quad on the Mate 20 Pro?

Putting out a feature that's already been done on Android hasn't ever bothered Apple in the past, so we're not sure why they wouldn't do the sensible thing here.

The leak comes from well-respected source OnLeaks, so it's hard to discount it -- particularly since another respected leaker, Ice Universe, has come forward to confirm.

However, OnLeaks strongly reminds us that it's a very early leak and thus subject to change:

As Pocket Lint points out, leaks like these often come from accessory makers -- a lot of the details that have slipped out about previous phones have come from case manufacturers.

If this one is the same, it might well mean that the specific details of what's in the camera enclosure and how it's laid out aren't relevant – if you're making a case that just has to skirt the edges of the enclosure, you don't need to know what's inside, just that you should make a cutout. So maybe this is a deliberate troll by Apple to see which manufacturers they can and can't trust, or maybe they just threw something together because the details weren't so important at this stage.

Or maybe this really is the iPhone XI.

Renders via Digit