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What to expect from Apple's next iPhone event

Lex Friedman, Dan Moren | Aug. 13, 2013
Signs point to Apple holding another of its trademark special events next month.

Signs point to Apple holding another of its trademark special events next month.

According to a report from AllThingsD published last weekend, and confirmed on Monday by The Loop, Apple will launch the next iPhone on September 10. So mark your calendar, get excited, and start coming to grips with the fact that your current iPhone is about to look seriously outdated.

On the face of it, that September timing makes sense: Apple launched the iPhone 5 on September 12 of last year, and the company has been pretty consistent about a once-per-year revision of its smartphone line-up.

The lone exception to that pattern was the iPhone 4S, which the company announced in October 2011, officially shifting the product line from a summer release schedule to a fall release. That release window better positions the smartphone for sales in the company's usually blockbuster holiday quarter.

If past years are any indication--and in the field of Apple tea-leaf reading, what else is there?--a launch event on September 10 would suggest that pre-orders for the phone would open on the Friday of that week, the spooktacular September 13.

The phone itself would likely go on sale the following Friday, the much less spooky September 20. Those intervals would be consistent with Apple's behavior in the cases of the iPhone 5 and the iPhone 4S.

Of course, those dates will probably apply only to select markets around the world--likely, the U.S., UK, Canada, Germany, France, Australia, and Japan. Last year, with the iPhone 5, Apple added both Hong Kong and Singapore to the launch list; while the company would no doubt like to tack on mainland China, which CEO Tim Cook sees as a growth opportunity for the iPhone, issues of supply chain and regulations may prevent such a day-and-date release. Even so, expect Apple to proclaim a quick international rollout--perhaps, its quickest ever.

One date likely to be consistent across the globe, however, would be the release of iOS 7. If prior years are any indication, that latest update to Apple's mobile operating system would appear a couple days before any new iPhone debuted. Based on the September 10 launch event, we'd ballpark iOS 7's release on September 18.

The plural of iPhone
Unsurprisingly, the tech press has of late been chock-a-block with iPhone rumors. While we obviously won't know with certainty what new hardware Tim Cook and company will announce until they, you know, announce it, we already have a clear picture of what announcements many folks expect.

There are, for example, rumors that new iPhones could come in different colors--and reports that iOS 7 includes options for the software to match the color of the iPhone it's running on. Some rumors also suggest that these colorful iPhones might actually be a new, cheaper version of the iPhone 5, perhaps made with a plastic casing instead of aluminum.


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