A supposed leaked image of the Lightning cable assembly for the iPhone 7 has ignited speculation that, contrary to most reports, Apple may not be ditching the 3.5mm headphone jack in its next iteration of the popular smartphone.
While there are a lot of iPhone 7 rumours floating about, the most contentious likely feature for Apple's next flagship has actually been the reported omission of the traditional headphone port.
On 3 May, however, French website NoWhereElse spotted an image on the Chinese social-networking site Weibo. The French site, which is famous for its leaks, claims it could be proof that the headphone port will be sticking around for at least the next generation of Apple mobile phones.
You can see the image at NWE website here. The author of the news post compares the supposed iPhone 7 internals with an iFixit breakdown of the iPhone 6S.
Notably, the white headphone port located on the left-side of the image is very similar in both images, indicating that it will be placed in a similar fashion to Apple's previous handset.
The veracity of the leak could be called into question as the image was posted on Weibo from an anonymous account. As the French site also notes, the part could also be that of a counterfeit Chinese device that are not uncommon in the region.
With plenty of concept videos and unconfirmed leaks flooding the internet, it is hard to tell for sure what Apple's audio plans really are. Respected KGI analyst Ming-Chi Kuo recently speculated that the iPhone 7 will eschew the usual wholesale design-shifts associated with non-S-range iPhones and instead will come with very few "attractive selling points".
While a possible iPad Pro-like Smart Connector could prove fruitful for Smart Accessories, the real buzz seems to be focused on 2017's iPhone, which Kuo is convinced will be packing an all-glass enclosure and an AMOLED display.
IBTimes UK recently weighed up the pros and cons of a possible all-glass iPhone, noting that if nothing else it would raise the stakes in "Apple's continued search for the wow-factor."