Apple has confirmed that CEO Steve Jobs will give the opening keynote speech at the company's World Wide Developer Conference ( WWDC ). The developer-only event will focus on the next version of Apple's Mac OS X operating system, dubbed Leopard. The iPhone is also likely to figure highly.
The keynote will eagerly greeted by Mac fans who've been starved of Steve Jobs' infamous 'reality distortion field' of late. It will also be a good opportunity for Jobs to inject some pizzazz into an otherwise disappointing year for Apple software - a year in which Microsoft has made much of the running.
Mac fans have had their patience tested by the non-arrival of new versions of iWork , iLife and Mac OS X, with only speculation and rumour to keep them going. Patience must surely also be wearing thin over a complete lack of concrete iPhone news.
One more thing
Like all Jobs keynotes, the WWDC event is likely to be part love-in, part evangelical meeting with collective 'oohs', 'aahs' and unrestrained whooping from the Mac faithful.
Jobs likes to reward their devotion with 'one more thing' - a carefully staged reveal that tips the crowd over the edge and into nerdy ecstasy. Jobs used last year's WWDC to reveal the quad-core Mac Pro , for example.
Steve Jobs certainly has lots of Apple hardware to choose from this time around: the iMac , MacBook , MacBook Pro , Mac mini and iPod are all overdue for updates - although the iPod is usually given a special event of its own.
Steve Jobs' keynote kicks off at 10am on Monday 11 June at the Moscone West conference centre in San Francisco. Apple plans to reveal all of Leopard's features to developers and give them a 'near final' beta version to take away. The final version of Mac OS X 10.5 Leopard is expected to ship early in the autumn.