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Why has it taken Apple such a long time to release the iPhone 4 in the color of White? They originally announced it near WWDC 2010. And it is available today (Thur. Apr. 28 2011)


asked Apr 28 '11 at 14:33

geekytechguy's gravatar image


White iPhone Alchemy http://modmyi.com/forums/iphone-news/761797-white-iphone-alchemy.html

"... Apple apparently was struggling with production Alchemy. Except it didn't involved gold, rather it involved white paint and ultra violet rays.

According to Apple senior vice president Phill Schiller in an interview with All Things Digitals Ina Fried, there were "a lot of unexpected interactions between the color of the device and various internal components."

Those unexpected interactions meant the white iPhone needing more UV protection. The article doesn't go into specifics as to what those interactions were. A few hypothesis however cite the fact his is the first iPhone to have a white back beneath a layer of glass. The problems this presents are:

1) Going from opaque black to translucent white allows light to enter the device. Previous white iPhone have been constructed of a solid piece of white plastic. Not a thin white layer recessed beneath glass

2) Many of the sensors and the camera in the iPhone are recessed a few milimeters below the surface. Having a thin white reflective layer would bee enough to deflect photons (basic unit of light) and affect the performance of sensors and the camera significantly. ..."

answered Apr 28 '11 at 16:13

r0bErT4u's gravatar image



THANKS! best comment yet.

(Apr 28 '11 at 20:06) geekytechguy geekytechguy's gravatar image

I think the problem was with the white plastic they used. They said that light was "leaking" out around flash as the plastic is semi-translucent. This causes pictures that are taken with the camera to be washed out.

answered Apr 28 '11 at 14:55

Feras's gravatar image


Oh, that makes sense.

(Apr 28 '11 at 15:10) geekytechguy geekytechguy's gravatar image

I actually heard that the white IPhone would interfere with the camera. White does equal more light since it reflects every single bit of it, black holds all of it (this is why black and white aren't seen as 'colors'). If it were to shiny it would throw off the foto's and videos made with the IPhone. But what @Feras said could also be true.

answered Apr 28 '11 at 15:18

nitrocrime's gravatar image


Issues were also effecting the proximity sensor - probably from the same cause, hence its redesign for the public release.

Here is the 'original' white iPhone4, which had a less pronounced cutaway for the sensor: alt text

And here is the current release:

alt text

answered Apr 28 '11 at 19:57

Uelogy's gravatar image


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Asked: Apr 28 '11 at 14:33

Seen: 1,724 times

Last updated: Apr 28 '11 at 20:06