Leaked iPhone 3G S Matte Finish iPhone Cases Were Real... or Canary Traps?

Way back in February a matte black next generation casing (for what's now known as the iPhone 3G S) made it's way around the internet. No one knew if it was real or not, and since WWDC introduced the iPhone 3G S with the same glossy finish as the previous generation, doubts -- they were raised.

According to Macrumors, however, the FCC ID and model numbers exactly match those released on the official, glossy, iPhone 3G S.


Did Apple flirt with matte and change its mind? Did problems arise in with the mass production of the matte versions? Are the matte versions being held for some sort of holiday roll out?

Panic's Cabel Sassar (via DF) wonders on Twitter whether it just might have been one of Apple's infamous canary trap -- information left out to see if it gets leaked, and to catch the source of the leak. Tom Clancy, meet Steve Jobs...

Either way, somebody at Apple thought matte was an option. Are you sad we didn't get it?

Rene Ritchie

Rene Ritchie is one of the most respected Apple analysts in the business, reaching a combined audience of over 40 million readers a month. His YouTube channel, Vector, has over 90 thousand subscribers and 14 million views and his podcasts, including Debug, have been downloaded over 20 million times. He also regularly co-hosts MacBreak Weekly for the TWiT network and co-hosted CES Live! and Talk Mobile. Based in Montreal, Rene is a former director of product marketing, web developer, and graphic designer. He's authored several books and appeared on numerous television and radio segments to discuss Apple and the technology industry. When not working, he likes to cook, grapple, and spend time with his friends and family.

  • Yes, I am sad, but it didn't stop me from pre-ordering my black 32G 3G S.
  • Yeah I am sad I ahte the plastic back it can get crack very easily!!
  • hate*
  • My wish was it had the feel of the coating on my Newton MessagePad 2100. ;-)
  • There's a "MEH!" loose around here! :)
  • Who cares? I never roll without a case anyway... white/black glossy/matte. Makes no difference.
  • Besides, we all keep them in cases anyway so it's a bit of a redundant discussion, no?
  • Not all of us use cases, I've still yet to find a case that looks as nice as my Apple designed iPhone. Mine has been naked for almost a year not and still looks great.
  • Could it be that this is a unfinished backing? Not polished or coated?
  • @Al Try Switch Easy, they make great cases.
  • I wanted the matte too.
    Either apple does know that people don't really like the platic back or because the platic back offers certain advantages that other matterials can't.
  • Matte coating looks cheap. I ordered my 3G(S) cannot wait to get. I will be selling my 3G.
  • try this case. it's super thin and shows the logo.
    Seidio Innocase II and sold on this website. holster works well too.
  • I've never used a case or screen protector. The plastic gets quite slippery at times, a matte finish would have been better in my opinion.
  • I worked for apple as a developer for 2 years and Matte Finish is a vinyl/plastic that we use for our internal prototypes before mass production.