Next week, all will be revealed. But if Apple introduces the iPhone 5, no one will be shocked. Apple's iOS 6 also likely to debut.

Thomas Claburn, Editor at Large, Enterprise Mobility

September 4, 2012

2 Min Read

Apple all but announced the next version of its popular iPhone Tuesday when it sent out an invitation to a media event to be held in San Francisco on Wednesday, September 12 at 10:00 a.m. PDT.

Apple Invitation

The invitation was anything but a surprise: Apple has been expected to hold a press conference to launch the next iPhone for months. However, the company has been unusually heavy-handed in hinting about what it plans to announce. The invitation shows the date of the event, the number 12, casting a shadow of the number 5.

Either this is a reference to the widely anticipated iPhone 5, or Apple is just stringing the public along for some unfathomable reason. The former possibility is much more likely, particularly given that the recent publication of reports about iPhone 5 components.

Last month, for example, iResQ, a device repair website, published images of what it claims is an iPhone 5 exterior casing. The images appear to confirm speculation that the iPhone 5 will be larger and will have a revised dock connector port.

[ Read AntiSec Hackers Post 1 Million Apple Device IDs. ]

Apple's event could also include the announcement of a new iPod touch, iPod Nano, and perhaps a 7" iPad. However, it now appears that Apple intends to discuss these devices at a subsequent event, perhaps in October.

Apple's mobile operating system refresh, iOS 6, is likely to be featured at next week's event. Apple developers have been working with pre-release versions of Apple's mobile operating system for several months. The company has said that iOS 6 is "coming this fall," but reports suggest that the iPhone 5, which presumably will ship with iOS 6, will be available September 21, the last day of summer.

Apple needs to do something to refresh its hardware. Samsung's Galaxy S3 is now selling faster than Apple's iPhone 4S, CNET reported.

And research firm Gartner recently noted that demand for Apple's iPhone was down 12.6% in the second quarter of 2012, compared to the first quarter, a dip the firm attributed to "users postponing upgrades to take advantage of high-profile device launches."

When it comes to high-profile device launches, there isn't likely to be one this year that attracts more attention.

About the Author(s)

Thomas Claburn

Editor at Large, Enterprise Mobility

Thomas Claburn has been writing about business and technology since 1996, for publications such as New Architect, PC Computing, InformationWeek, Salon, Wired, and Ziff Davis Smart Business. Before that, he worked in film and television, having earned a not particularly useful master's degree in film production. He wrote the original treatment for 3DO's Killing Time, a short story that appeared in On Spec, and the screenplay for an independent film called The Hanged Man, which he would later direct. He's the author of a science fiction novel, Reflecting Fires, and a sadly neglected blog, Lot 49. His iPhone game, Blocfall, is available through the iTunes App Store. His wife is a talented jazz singer; he does not sing, which is for the best.

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