iPhone 5 Release at Apple's WWDC Possible, Not Likely

Apple could use its annual Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) to launch a new iPhone or refreshed MacBooks, but the focus is more likely to be on software, an Apple expert says.

Although an announcement regarding the launch of the iPhone 5 is highly anticipated, Apple may not be ready to take the wraps off the newest version the popular smartphone at its upcoming Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC).

Apple announced April 25 that it will hold its annual WWDC June 11-15 at San Francisco€™s Moscone West. While the conference is geared toward software and development€”cluing developers in on the future of iOS and OS X "Mountain Lion," and offering a vast assortment of technical sessions as well as Apple design awards€”the company has used the event in the past to launch new products.

Rumors of an imminent launch of the iPhone 5 have fueled speculation Apple could use WWDC to unveil the popular smartphone, a prospect the president of Apple reseller and care specialist Michael Oh said he finds possible, but not likely. €œWith the iPhone stuff, there is talk, and they are probably going to break their normal release cycle,€ he said. €œEverybody€™s saying the new one is going to come out sooner. But I also see them doing it in its own event for the press and the impact.€

There have also been rumors of a refresh of the MacBook Pro line of notebooks, sporting Intel Ivy Bridge chipsets and high-resolution Retina displays, which Oh said is also possible. However, he said he expects any hardware news to be relatively minor, with a bigger focus on operating systems and software development.

€œI can guarantee we€™ll see a lot of demos of the Mountain Lion OS€”much more baked versions of what we€™ve seen so far,€ he said.

If new CEO Tim Cook addresses the conference with a keynote speech (and he is likely to), Oh said to expect a different style from that of former CEO and Apple founder Steve Jobs, who passed away last year. €œHe€™s not going to go up there and try to do something like Jobs. No matter what he does, he€™s not going to be able to duplicate that effort,€ he said. €œSo he€™s taken a step back and [will] let the substance be the driver of the message. At this point, so many people have pricked up their ears to Apple that it doesn€™t even matter.€

At WWDC, developers will be able to explore the latest innovations, features and capabilities of iOS and OS X Mountain Lion and learn how to enhance the functionality, performance, quality and design of their apps. Developers can also bring their code to the labs and work with Apple engineers, applying development techniques and best-practices to enhance their apps.

Apple€™s WWDC 2012 offers more than 100 technical sessions presented by Apple engineers on a range of topics for developing, deploying and integrating the latest iOS and OS X technologies. The conference also includes 100 hands-on labs staffed by more than 1,000 Apple engineers providing developers with code-level assistance, insight into optimal development techniques and guidance on how they can make the most of iOS and OS X technologies in their apps.

Attendees will also have the opportunity to connect with thousands of fellow developers from around the world. Last year more than 60 countries were represented.

Developers interested in attending can go to the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference 2012 Website to purchase tickets, as well as for updates and more information. Apple noted that developers who are unable to attend this year€™s conference could access and watch all technical sessions from the Apple Developer Website for free as soon as they are posted.