iPhone 8's 3rd color leak looks like Copper Gold

The iPhone 8's latest set of photos show what's supposed to be a third color in the assumed two-color lineup. Where previous to today we'd seen the standard silver and a black model, today we're seeing a slightly rustier tone. Is it Salmon? Is it closer to what Apple might end up calling some sort of Warm Gold?

If we track these images all the way back to their source, we find that they appear on Han Han on Weibo. This indicates to me that not only are they not real, they're coming from a familiar source. They come from the same place as we found our "will make you and Jony Ive weep" photo collection.

Have a peek at the weeping collection and see how similar the images are. Han Han (or Han Han Dignified) is either an owner or an associate of a creator of smartphone cases. A manufacturer who creates cases for smartphones needs to be at the bleeding edge of the next device – first place winners here make mounds of dough.

SEE ANOTHER SHERLOCK: this iPhone 8 in a Foxconn box

As such, the devices seen here are far more likely a set of case-maker copies. They're shaped the way they should be, probably, but the makeup of the hardware isn't necessarily correct. Instead of finalized Apple hardware, it'd make more sense to use low-cost materials to create final-looking smartphones for creating cases (and other accessories)

These devices could be using transparent plastic up front and around back instead of glass and plastic. Using transparent plastic cuts costs dramatically and allows the color of the device to be switched with great ease. A simple placement of a printed sheet behind the plastic changes the whole situation.

The biggest indicator that these images aren't what they're being spread as is the set of boxes behind the singular Salmon photo. There you'll see the simplest of packaging. A tiny white box like this is what's used to send prototype devices to journalists, analysts, and so forth when a new device isn't ready for stores, but is ready for basic review.

Apple wouldn't ship something so precious in a box so ill-protected. There's absolutely no way a device as important as this in packaging so basic. Instead, count on these being made with third-hand specifications for case-makers that'd rather make cases fast than make them correct.