Singapore operator M1 made official the camera-less iPhones model which is specially designed for soldiers. It seems that, Singapore’s military service prohibits its soldiers from having camera-equipped cellphones. Taking this into consideration, and the fact that it is not possible to remove the camera from an Apple smartphone without losing the warranty, Apple came up with special non-camera iPhone 4 or iPhone 4S which have been approved by Singapore’s Ministry of Defense.
The devices will cost $49 ($38) more than original version for a two-year contract with the operator because there is no way to buy it unlocked at full retail price. However, Apple won’t be providing warranty, but an M1 appointed contractor would ask $321 for 1 year. The others mobile operators from Singapore, SingTel and StarHub, are also looking to offer this models, but it is not known the date of their release.
There are many rumors about this interdiction to use camera cellphones and the “need” to use “non-camera” iPhones (espionage, spy games, military training secrets), but I tend to believe the official approach: it is a security measure preventing the access of camera embedded devices to restricted areas, nothing more.