ABOVE: Apple fans in Hong Kong, Mississippi, and New York City camped out a few days in advance to get the new iPhone 6
TORONTO – After months of speculation, Apple fans will finally get a glimpse of the tech giant’s next generation of products.
Apple’s elusive Sept. 9 event is shaping up to be a big one.
But the notoriously tight-lipped company has been more secretive than ever about the event. The stark white invitation sent to reporters and industry personnel doesn’t give any hints about what may be revealed.
“Wish we could say more,” reads the invitation.
The event will take place at the same Cupertino, Calif. venue where Apple’s late co-founder Steve Jobs unveiled the original Mac computer 30 years ago. So if the venue is any indication, Apple may be gearing up to unveil some big products.
What we do know is these fall events are usually used to announce the new version of Apple’s flagship iPhone – but according to industry experts, the iPhone could be overshadowed this time around by the company’s first foray into wearable tech.
Here’s what to expect from Apple’s Sept. 9 event:
Brace yourselves: The iPhone may be getting a sizable upgrade. Apple is widely expected to announce not one but two new versions of its flagship product – one with a 4.7-inch screen and another with a 5.5-inch screen.
The iPhone 5S, released last September, has a screen size of 4 inches. If Apple does unveil a 5.5-inch version of the iPhone 6, it would be a direct competitor of other “phablets” on the market such as Samsung’s Galaxy Note smartphone line which boasts a 5.5-inch and 5.7-inch version.
And bigger screens could mean bigger sales for the tech giant – some analysts think Apple could sell at least 70 million units of the iPhone 6 within the first few months after the device hits the market.
Both phones are rumoured to be thinner and feature a “sapphire crystal display” – a highly scratch-resistant glass. Of course, it’s likely both models will have an improved processor and camera.
The iPhone 6 models will likely ship within two weeks of the announcement for Canadian consumers; but recent reports suggest one of the devices could be released at a later date.
Wearable tech fans may finally be able to feast their eyes on perhaps the longest-rumoured Apple product ever – the iWatch.
That said, little is known about the mysterious smartwatch. Speculation about the device’s design has ranged from a snap bracelet with a curved display to a more traditional-looking smartwatch resembling the company’s square iPod Nano.
Either way, Apple’s smartwatch will likely include a bevy of sensors and health monitoring features to work with the recently announced HealthKit, which will allow users to keep track of their health data including their blood pressure, steps taken, blood-sugar levels, nutrition levels and more. Apple has also teamed up with Nike and the Mayo clinic to develop mobile health apps.
Many reports suggest that even if the iWatch is announced Sept. 9, it won’t ship until early 2015.
Where there’s a new iPhone; there’s a new operating system. Apple users already got a sneak peak at the latest mobile operating system, iOS 8, at Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference in June.
READ MORE: Apple unveils iOS 8, OS X Yosemite at WWDC
The new software will sport interactive notifications, so you can respond to a message without having to leave another app. It will have new gestures, such as double tapping to see a list of frequent contacts, and the ability to record voice and video clips through iMessage.
The most recent rumors surrounding Apple’s latest business venture center around mobile payments. According to a report from Bloomberg, the tech giant has partnered with Visa, MasterCard and American Express for a mobile wallet for iPhone users.
The report, which cited a source familiar with the matter, said Apple would also partner with banks and retailers.
This comes after many reports suggested the iPhone 6 would include near-field communication technology (NFC) in the form of a chip allowing for “tap-and-go” payments similar to some credit cards. The technology is cutting-edge: Android devices have used NFC technology for more than three years; Google also uses the technology for its mobile wallet.
But an interesting twist to an iPhone wallet would turn Apple’s Touch ID fingerprint scanner into a pin for the user’s bank accounts and credit cards.