New "leaked" photos of iPad Mini surface on Twitter, Instagram

Instagram/sonnydickson

Photos posted on Twitter and Instagram Tuesday are inspiring a new crop of Apple iPad Mini rumors.

CNET reports that 9to5Mac researcher Sonny Dickson posted a series of photos that look like prototypes of the rumored 7.85-inch iPad that is widely expected to be announced this month.

It's not clear if these are really "leaked" photos or fan-created prototypes of the device. Adding fuel to the fire is the fact that photo depicts a tablet with a Lightening dock connector, which debuted on the iPhone 5, but will likely be included in Apple's mobile devices moving forward.

A surge of recent reports have suggested that the iPad Mini will be announced at a press event on Oct. 17.

The Wall Street Journal reported Sunday that Apple has placed an order for 10 million units of the iPad Mini to component suppliers in Asia. The Journal previously reported that production has already started on the device.

Earlier this month, Fortune reported that Apple will send an invitation out on Oct. 10 for an Oct. 17 event, where the tech giant will announce the iPad Mini. Those rumors align with a report in August by AllThingsD saying that Apple is planning to hold an event in October.

We'll find out soon enough if the rumors are true. In the meanwhile, see the photos posted on Twitter below.

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