Apple released the iPhone 5 several months ago, and already, reports are suggesting that a 2013 iPhone 5S / 6 and iOS 7 are beginning to appear in some developer logs. According to a report from TheNextWeb, some developers are seeing code that suggests that both a new iPhone and iOS 7 are being tested.
One developer showed us that Apple has been testing hardware relating to a new ‘iPhone6,1′ identifier, powered by a device running iOS 7, which is expected to be released by Apple in the middle part of this year.
Apple’s current flagship, the iPhone 5, bears the identifiers ‘iPhone5,1′ and ‘iPhone 5,2′ depending on the LTE model of the handset and the 4G bands on which it operates.
It is likely that the “2013 iPhone” that is referred to in the report is in fact, a resdesigned model. Apple is expected to release an “S” version of the current iPhone 5 as they have done with all other generations. However, over the past several months, the Cupertino company has been rumored to be working on a redesigned 7th generation iPhone. The report also mentioned that developers discovered that the new device found was running iOS 7.
Apple announced iOS 6 in June of 2012, and later released it to the public in October. This is likely the same timeframe that Apple will use for the new iPhone 5S and iOS 7 release, with a media event announcing both in June 2013, followed by a public release in the Fall. This would set up Apple for the holiday season of 2013, however, the device has also been rumored for release in mid-2013.
Many rumor sites are already speculating on features in iOS 7, and the next generation iPhone is expected to carry features such as Near Field Communication, updated cameras and possibly a new A7 chip. In the past, Apple has introduced an entirely new chip such as the A5 and A6 chips, followed by an A5X and A6X chips in new iPad generations. Other developers are beginning to see the next gen iPhone with iOS 7, suggesting that internal software testing has moved to advanced stage.