updated 07:01 pm EDT, Wed August 28, 2013
Employee vacation time suspended in anticipation of unannounced event
Though not explicitly mentioned in a memo obtained by a T-Mobile enthusiast site, the cellular provider is planning blackout dates between Friday, September 20 and Sunday, September 22 -- the dates most likely to be the first weekend of new iPhone availability, assuming the new model or models are announced on September 10 as widely rumored. Apple usually allows a few days between the announcement and retail availability of new iPhones.
While it is also possible that the blackout dates may be related to the public availability of Samsung's Galaxy Note III, which is expected to be announced on September 4, thus far carrier blackout dates have applied nearly exclusively to the release of new iPhone models. While other phones are popular in the aggregate, the iPhone remains the best-selling individual brand of smartphone in the world, and lineups or high launch-day demand for any other comparable device remains rare.
t would make sense for Apple to announce the new iPhone on September 10, kick off pre-orders very shortly thereafter and thus make the retail debut fall on a weekend. The September 10 announcement date has not yet been confirmed by Apple but is widely expected to occur, with announcements likely coming this weekend or very shortly afterwards. The latest speculation on the event has Apple sticking to only the announcement of iPhones and iOS 7, leaving new iPads for a later date.
Apple is anticipated to release two models of iPhone, a lower-cost "5C" and the next model of regular iPhone, the "5S," which is expected to have significant changes under the hood but look similar to the iPhone 5, as have previous models such as the iPhone 3GS and 4S. A number of leaks and unconfirmed reports have the company expanding the color choices for the next model of iPhone to include a "gold" option