Rumours believed to have stemmed from China's notorious Foxconn manufacturing plant suggest that iPhone 5 might be released as early as the summer.
With iPhone 4S having only arrived in October 2011 – and that some two years plus after iPhone 3GS – a June or July launch would appear on paper o be exceptionally early.
Nonetheless, the rumours reported by 9to5Mac also claim the device will have a four inch LG display and, despite some rumours, be completely flat. They also claim that several variants of the prototype are doing the rounds.
If production is to go into production in the next few months as anticipated, that would certainly indicate a strategic return to Apple's traditional summer release timetable.