iPhone 6s
The iPhone 6s successor could be called the iPhone 6 SE according to a new leak. Getty Images/WILLIAM WEST

After months of making everyone believe that Apple is debuting an iPhone 7-named smartphone during its September event, photos of a different iPhone that goes by a different moniker has landed online, courtesy of a Chinese leaker. The pics showcase what appears to be an iPhone device’s retail box with the name “iPhone 6 SE” instead of "iPhone 7.”

Making this leak more believable is a follow-up that features the handset in the flesh, displaying its impressive scores on GeekBench’s speed tests. This so-called iPhone 6 SE scored 3,042 in the single-core test and 5,210 in the multi-core tests — both ratings are higher than the iPhone 6s’ scores of 2,542 and 4,427 in the single-core and multi-core tests, respectively. It is also important to note that Geekbench recognizes the device’s model as iPhone 6 SE and its operating system as iOS 10, according to GSM Arena.

Just this past March, the Cupertino tech giant launched the iPhone SE, which sported a 4-inch display, 2GB RAM, a 12-megapixel camera and iOS 9.3.2. It would be a a bit of a stretch to believe that Apple is releasing a follow-up to the device just six months later. Plus, it would hurt consumers who bought the iPhone SE, thinking that it will not be obsolete in a span of months, as per an earlier GSM Arena report.

Nevertheless, the leaked photos of the iPhone 6 SE have since been debunked by many tech sites as fake, with Apple Insider pointing out that the low resolution pictures were manipulated as proven by the inconsistent spacing of the texts and the typography of the storage box. The site also noted that the photographed pamphlet does not contain the specific and detailed descriptions of the device that are very typical of Apple’s pamphlets. In addition, MacRumors noted that there are background color discrepancies in areas of certain texts to prove that the photos have been manipulated.

Despite the inauthentic nature of the photographs, GSM Arena still noted that there is a possibility that Apple will be calling the upcoming smartphones the iPhone 6 SE and iPhone 6 SE Plus because the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus monikers have yet to be officially confirmed by Apple. BGR also pointed out that the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus monikers were simply based on the assumption that Apple is upgrading the numerical name of the iPhone, since previous releases would tell us that the company likes to increase the number that’s part of the name of its new smartphone once it is done with the “S” upgrade. Furthermore, since Apple is celebrating the 10th anniversary of the iPhone next year, it is very likely that the company is reserving a major upgrade that would not sport the consecutive “S” upgrade moniker.

Meanwhile, Taiwanese singer-actor Jimmy Lin has once again proven that he is the king of iPhone confirmations. The Apple products enthusiast just shared online a snap of himself holding what appears to be the rumored new iteration of the iPhone line, as pointed out by Forbes. The device Lin is holding in the photo first obtained by Yeah1 coincides with the rumors claiming that the new iPhone will mostly look like the iPhone 6, with the addition of a dual-lens camera system on its back.

Unfortunately, Lin, who has been leaking iPhone devices ahead of their launch since 2012, did not divulge the name of the device, so Apple fans would just have to wait and see for themselves if Apple is going with iPhone 7 or iPhone 6 SE as the official moniker of the smartphone.