In what would likely be a major surprise to many Apple followers, The Loop‘s Jim Dalrymple reports that Apple is not planning to introduce any new hardware at its annual Worldwide Developers Conference, scheduled for June 6th through 10th. The conference has been consistently used to introduce new iPhone hardware over the last several years, with the company occasionally introducing other hardware as well.
Apple’s apparent focus on software in its WWDC announcement backs up what my own sources are saying about the annual conference. That is, expect a software show in 2011, not a hardware event.
While a focus on software is not unusual for Apple’s WWDC promotional materials given its primary positioning as an event for developers, Dalrymple notes that the 2011 materials do nothing to contradict what he has already been hearing from sources: namely, no new hardware this year.
It is also important to note that Dalrymple has not specifically claimed that new iPhone hardware won’t be introduced in the same general timeframe as WWDC, merely claiming that any introduction won’t occur at the event itself.
One analyst report from late last month indicated that a September launch for the fifth-generation iPhone seemed to be the likely scenario. Those rumors were turned into claims of “delays” that were refuted by Dalrymple himself and other sources. The difference may have been in semantics, however, as Dalrymple simply noted at the time that Apple had not deviated from its own internal release schedule plans, but whether those plans called for a typical June release or something more in line with the September rumors or even something else entirely was unknown.