iPhone 7 Rumor Rollup: Holes in this story; leaky week; 3 or 2 models?

Rumormongers ask: What will replace 3.5mm headphone jack on iPhone 7?

iPhone 7 Rumor Rollup
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With Apple expected to announce the iPhone 7 on Sept. 7, time is running short to squeeze in fresh rumors about the next magical smartphone, which is expected to boast a more powerful processor, more storage, better camera technology and improved water resistance. But have no fear, as such speculation is indeed swirling.

Holes in this iPhone 7 story

On Friday, bloggers hopped on a report from France’s Nowhereelse website, which shared a schematic supposedly from an Apple partner in China that shows an iPhone 7 possibly outfitted with a microphone rather than the 3.5mm headphone jack that is rumored to be disappearing. AppleInsider posted the headline: “Alleged ‘iPhone 7’ schematics hint at mic instead of second speaker.”

MORE: Best iPhone 7 design concepts

The general thinking had been that Apple might stick a second speaker in that space, as it moves to turn its Lightning adapter into an earbud connector. MacRumors says the NWE post indicates the holes depicted in the schematic might be mostly cosmetic (as if anyone really cares what the bottom of the device looks like?).

We've sprung a leak!

Leaked images were squirting from all directions over the past week. These included:

*A10 processors, from the site Techtastic. Yup, they have Apple logos on them, and they say A10 on them too.

*A turned-on iPhone 7 prototype, emanating from where else: China. Unfortunately, the alleged 4.7-inch iPhone prototype seen in this video is not showcasing iOS10, but rather, an unglamorous internal software build.

These rumors are Apple's fault?

Perhaps one reason that there's been so much confusion over whether Apple would be issuing 3 or 2 new iPhones this fall is that Apple hadn't made up its mind until relatively recently. Nikkei reported that Apple's decision-making has been greatly impacted by increased competition:

The competition is so fierce that Apple killed off a premium iPhone 7 model in the second quarter, less than six months before its official launch in September, according to a source.

Initially, Apple had planned two versions of iPhone 7 Plus, one with a single lens and one with a dual lens. The single lens edition has since been ditched, the source said.

"This never happened before. Before this year, Apple never made changes to iPhone's product line mere months before the launch. It has been a volatile year for Apple," a source said.

If this is all true, this mock-up of all three supposedly new iPhone 7 models is already outdated...

MORE: 1 Billion reasons to care about iPhone 7

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