Is 2011 the year Asia’s iPhone Nano rumours finally come true?

It’s that time of the year when rumours of the latest, upcoming iPhone device and its spec begin popping up across the web. Thanks to the fact that the devices are built in the region, Asia is generally the place where information, rumours, tidbits and unofficial pics of the devices crop up.

For example, last week alone saw two separate leaks from Asia relating to the iPhone 5 which is rumoured to be launching this September.

Gizmodo rounds the rumours up below:

Phone 5 cases leak in China

iPhone 5 cases reportedly showed up in China only a couple days ago and since then they have pretty much taken over mainland China, with new leaks popping up just about everywhere. The iPhone 5 cases were supposedly based on blueprints sent to a third party case manufacturer so they could prep accessories for the upcoming launch of the phone. As expected, we saw what appeared to be a larger display (approximately 4-inches).

iPhone 4S lands in Vietnam

From the team that brought us leaked pictures of the iPhone 4 before its release comes the iPhone 4S. showed us photos a a white iPhone that resembled the iPhone 4 but seemed to have its glass replaced with plastic. According to the source, what we were looking at was the less expensive iPhone 4S that is expected to accompany the iPhone 5 when it launches in September.

These leaks suggest that Apple will release a budget version of the device, as shown by the leak from Vietnam. However, these rumours have been rife for a number of years with iPhone ‘Nano’ devices available in Southeast Asia despite the fact that Apple has never produced them.

Is this image proof that the much-anticipated budget iPhone will launch this year?

The sheer number of duplicate iPhones, iPads and Apple-related products in Asia is breathtaking at first, but in a continent where fake goods (or those that have ‘fallen off the back of a truck’) are rife, one can easily become used to seeing ‘exclusive new iPhone leak’ photos cropping up in Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia, China or other Asian countries.

Aside from the fake-or-real images and videos are the leaks, which usually originate from China where the devices are made. Below is the latest one, which appeared in the Chinese media, giving further credence to the rumoured September launch for the iPhone 5.

According to “China Times,” Apple is set to manufacture 4 million units of the latest iPhone following a production run of about 400,000 test units. The newspaper revealed that iPhone 5 will be launched in the second week of September 2011.

Of course, there are times when the rumours and prototype devices are genuine – such as the New York-based Chinese teenager who got access to white iPhone parts, and started a business providing ‘white iPhone upgrades’ before the white-colour devices were released – and therein lies the skill of Apple rumours in Asia, spotting the genuine from the fake.

Images allegedly showing the redesigned case of the iPhone 5

Previous iPhone rumours from Asia include:

The ‘budget’ (4S) iPhone rumour has picked up some momentum and credibility this year after a note from a Deutsche Bank analyst referenced it while news giant Bloomberg suggested Apple would introduce a $200 version of the iPhone with its next generation release.

Apple’s own Tim Cook hinted at the possibility of a cheaper version of the device when he stated that he didn’t want Apple’s products to be “just for the rich” and that Apple “understood price is big factor in the prepaid market” while the company was “not ceding any market.”

This could be the year for the budget iPhone…but do keep an eye on the annual rotten Apple rumours coming out of Asia.

Images via Gizmodo