One component maker said Apple is hoping to ship millions of iPhones to assembly lines by August. (Brendan McDermid/Reuters)

Citing unnamed “people familiar with the situation,” the Journal reported that iPhone manufacturers have been told to prepare for 25 million units by the end of 2011.

One source said Apple instructed that manufacturers be ready to ship components for the first few million units to Hon Hai assembly factories by the end of August.

In addition to a lighter, slimmer body, the report also says that the new phone will have an 8MP camera. That idea’s been floating around for months and been building momentum.

As always, take these reports with a grain or two of salt. A Digitimes report yesterday indicated that Apple made its initial order with Pegatron, not Hon Hai. Some people think Apple is launching two iPhones in September, and others think that the next iPhone will be a small revamp.

Still, everything in the Journal’s report backs up previous speculation and suggests that a big fall product launch is looking more and more likely.

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