03 February 2021
A bunch of new iPhone 5s prototype images has surfaced online that shows it in a new Black and Slate color option. The images have been shared by a Twiter user @DongleBookPro who is well-known for sharing unreleased Apple products' prototypes. It is a new color variant as the iPhone 5s was released in Silver, Gold, and Space Gray color options in 2013.
The images suggest that Apple might have considered releasing the iPhone 5s in Black and Slate color options. This is likely to be the first speculation but the user suggests one more scenario. He believes that Apple is likely to have used that color combination to conceal the phone's identity while it was under development. The particular unit in the photo was manufactured in 2012 and that is another reason to believe that the team wanted people to think it was an iPhone 5 if someone happened to have come across the prototype ahead of the release.
iPhone 5s Prototype— Dongle (@DongleBookPro) January 17, 2021
This unit has a slate gray iPhone 5 style housing (likely to try and conceal the device) with numerous differences from production (matte top & bottom)
Additionally it was manufactured in December of 2012, months after the 5 was released pic.twitter.com/qmKBxCuih7
Even if Apple was working to release the iPhone 5s Black and Slate color variant, it seemed to have scrapped the idea and opted for the Space Grey color option instead. This is one color option that has remained consistent throughout various Apple products including iPad, iPad, and MacBook models. The Black and Slate color option was made available only on the iPhone 5, iPad mini (1st generation), and iPod Touch (5th generation) but did not expand further as it was easier to scratch, chip, and scuff.
As for the iPhone 5s, it was released in 2013 and was packed with many firsts. It was the first iPhone to feature a 64-bit processor, Touch ID, a True Tone LED flash, a five-element camera lens with f/2.2 aperture, a 15% larger camera sensor, 720p Slow-Mo video recording at 120fps, and Burst Mode. Many of these features eventually made their way to other smartphones.