White iPhone 4 Delay Reportedly Due to Light Leaks with the Camera

When Apple unveiled the iPhone 4, they also showed off a white version that would be available alongside the black one. Since then, however, the company repeatedly pushed back the launch date for the white version, claiming that the white one was, “more challenging to manufacture than we originally expected”. Now, Cult of Mac is reporting that the problem has to do with the camera design, with the white semi-translucent glass causing light leaks and washing out photographs taken with the phone.

The white iPhone 4 can’t take accurate photographs. The handset’s semi-translucent glass case leaks light in, ruining pictures taken with the internal camera, especially when the built-in flash is used.

“You don’t get accurate pictures on the white iPhone because of the color of the glass back. It washes out the pictures,” said a source with connections to Apple who asked to remain anonymous.

Too bad — they should have released the “broken” ones as a special edition for photo enthusiasts who like low-fi photography.

Thanks for the tip Udi!

Image credit: light leak by brainware3000

  • greenecam

    I would have loved this mucho!

  • Michael Savage

    That’s odd but it makes sense…

  • Anonymous

    I really doubt it. If that were so, they could just “back paint” the white with a reflective silvery surface, and that would brighten the white too. Model building makers tend to paint the insides of models so the lights don’t show out.

    Besides, where are the gaps in the camera module housing? It’s a sealed unit, it needs to be, except for the lens opening.

  • brian

    ya I don’t see this being possible. maybe they mean ‘flare’ but a light leak is different

  • Mike

    Lomography version. Higher price too.

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  • Hal Tapley

    I am an experienced photographer and I have compared the white iPhone 4 with the black iPhone 4. The movie light & flash on the white phone leaks light  through the white plastic which causes reflections and flare of the light. I will be asking for a replacement phone . It shouldn’t be too difficult for Apple to correct this problem. I am surprised Apple released the White iPhone 4 with such a serious problem with the flash. They should be recalling all white iPhone 4’s.

  • Hal Tapley

    I have discovered that the retailer who supplied the iPhone failed to remove the protective film from the phone before inserting into its case. This worsens the flash problem considerably but there still appears to be a lot of light leakage into the white plastic around the lens and flash causing the light to reflect.