A minor number of iPhone 12 and 11 users have noticed discoloration on the aluminum chassis as the vibrant factory colors have lightened significantly.
The exact reason for the discoloration of the chassis has not been completely pinpointed as the iPhones with the issues have all been used normally as intended. According to svetapple.sk, the issue could be a chemical reaction between the silicone case or UV light to change the pigment of the brighter colors.
However each hypothesis is not concrete; as there are many variables that play in this phenomenon such as friction, light, material, etc. While there have been many conversations on forums, it seems that this issue has occurred on the iPhone 11 and SE (2nd generation). Thankfully, the issue does not seem to be widespread or affect the reliability/performance of the actual device.
If you or a friend have experienced this issue be sure to check out the Apple Discussion to read other experiences and learn more about the issue firsthand.