Mark your calendars: A new iPhone could be in your hand in a little more than a month.
Over the weekend, Evan Blass, who has made his bones leaking accurate details about upcoming smartphones, announced that the iPhone 7 would arrive the week of Sept. 12. In a subsequent tweet, Blass clarified that he meant the phone would go on sale that week, specifying Sept. 16 as the date Apple's next phone will hit retail shelves.
That's a departure from how Apple has handled things the last couple of years. Typically, the company holds a press event in early September — last year's edition took place Sept. 9 — where it unveils the new iPhones along with any other hardware it's hoping to sell during the upcoming holidays. The phones usually arrive in stores a couple weeks later: in the case of the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus, that was on Sept. 25.
So if the iPhone arrives Sept. 16, when would Apple hold a press event to unveil the iPhone 7? Blass followed up with yet another tweet, claiming that iPhone 7 pre-orders would start on Sept. 9. "You can extrapolate the launch event date from there," he wrote.
Apple generally starts taking iPhone pre-orders the week of its launch event, with the phone arriving just after that. Using Blass's projected calendar, that would mean Apple would take the wraps off the iPhone 7 the week of Sept. 5, with Tuesday or Wednesday the most likely days for a press event, since Monday, Sept. 5 is the Labor Day holiday in the U.S.
Apple has plenty of incentive to get the iPhone 7 out as quickly as possible. Rival Samsung is planning an Aug. 2 press event in New York where it's expected to take the wraps off the Galaxy Note 7. That would give Samsung more than a month's head start if Apple were to stick to its usual schedule for fall releases. And Apple just reported another quarter of slumping iPhone sales, selling 40.4 million iPhones during its fiscal third third quarter. While that beat Wall Street expectations, it's still a 21 percent drop from what Apple sold in the same quarter a year ago.
There's still lingering questions over how much excitement Apple can build for this fall's iPhone launch. Rumors surrounding the upcoming phone have yet to generate much buzz, as it's expected the new iPhones will drop the 3.5mm headphone jack while adding dual-lens cameras on the larger iPhones. Speaking of larger phones, Apple could be developing an iPhone Pro aimed at mobile users who view their phone as more of a laptop replacement.
We'll find out if the next iPhone can exceed the tech industry's tepid expectations when Apple holds that iPhone 7 launch event. Let us know what your expectations are in the forums.