Could indicate new testing phase at Apple
Web traffic from iOS 7 users has surged in the last week or so, reports say. MacRumors notes that it saw iOS 7 hits on its website start to climb on April 29th. Those numbers fell over the weekend, but have risen even higher since. All of the hits are said to be coming from a block of IP addresses belonging to Apple.
Development behind schedule
Sources for Bloomberg are backing claims that lead Apple designer Jonathan Ive is engaging in a major design overhaul for iOS 7. As has been reported previously, the sources say that Ive is avoiding the skeuomorphism favored by former iOS head Scott Forstall, for example ditching the shelving metaphor used by Newsstand. He is also allegedly pursuing "dramatic changes" to the Mail and Calendar apps, though what that means is unclear.
Special version of Maps may appear on dashboard displays
With iOS 7, Apple wants to deepen in-car integration options for iOS devices, sources claim. Currently such integration is limited mostly to things like iPod input or Siri Eyes Free, which makes it possible to issue Siri commands with a quick-access button. Sources tell 9to5Mac, however, that Apple is working with car companies on new center consoles that could dock an iPhone and output an optimized, car-oriented version of Maps to a dashboard display.
Learning curve expected to stay minimal
iOS 7 is codenamed "Innsbruck," and will use a "very, very flat" design, sources for 9to5Mac claim. The OS is reportedly jettisoning any signs of gloss or skeuomorphism, making it flat on a level nearing the look of the Metro interface used in Windows Phone and Windows 8. Apple has sometimes been criticized for using unnecessary real-world analogies in the look of iOS and OS X, for instance by making its Calendar apps resemble leather daybooks.
Sightings suggest that active testing is underway
Developer and website logs have begun to record visits from a previously unknown iPhone model, and even indicating that the devices are using iOS 7, the next major revision that is expected to offer a design overhaul as well. While such OS and device data may possibly be faked, many of the reports are from the unique IP block assigned to Apple, lending credibility. The activity indicates that testing is well underway, making at least a preview of iOS 7 much more likely at the Worldwide Developer's Conference, expected to happen in June.
Info, photo match earlier leak
An iPhone 5S expected this year will use a quad-core 1.2GHz A7 processor paired with PowerVR's quad-core SGX554MP4 graphics, and 2GB of LPDDR-800 RAM, says a DroidGator source allegedly working for Apple. The person has also supplied a photo of the device's motherboard, and claims that improving Siri will be a major focus of iOS 7. Every iPhone upgrade has been accompanied by a major iOS release.
Engineers being pulled off OS X 10.9 to help, report claims
iOS 7 represents a "rather significant system-wide UI overhaul," Daring Fireball's John Gruber claims to have learned. The blogger also says he has heard the same thing as Rene Ritchie, who alleges that "[Apple lead designer Jonathan] Ive's work is apparently making many people really happy, but will also apparently make rich-texture-loving designers sad." Engineers allowed to have the OS on their iPhones are even rumored to be using polarizing filters to make it harder for passers-by to see the interface changes.
Said to differ little from iPhone 5 board
A leaked photo shows an alleged motherboard for an "iPhone 5S," according to iOSDoc. The board is said to be roughly similar to the one for the iPhone 5, which may support views that the device will be just a modest upgrade, for instance keeping roughly the same dimensions as its predecessor. The photo does show an A7 processor, however, which the source claims is a quad-core 1.2GHz chip, paired with PowerVR's quad-core SGX554MP4 graphics.
Details of tech still kept quiet
Apple is searching for an "iOS Frameworks QA Engineer" who will have the chance at working on "the very first iPhone/iPad app that uses a new API/framework in the next version of iOS," notes AppleInsider. The person will have to cooperate with different engineering teams to ensure the quality of APIs and frameworks. The job listing -- quoted above -- doesn't specify what a next-generation API might contain, but offers a first hint at Apple's development of iOS 7.
Developer code for iOS 7 could arrive during WWDC
Identifiers for iOS 7 and a next-generation iPhone have started appearing in app usage logs, several developers say. One developer in particular has recorded an "iPhone6,1" device running iOS 7; for reference, the iPhone 5 is listed either as "iPhone5,1" or "iPhone5,2," depending on the cellular bands it uses. The new identifiers are linked to an IP address at Apple's Cupertino headquarters, which suggests that Apple is testing out early builds of iOS 7 with pre-existing apps.