It's official: new iPhone 2018 launch event is scheduled for September 12

Apple's new iPhone 2018 launch event will take place on Wednesday, September 12 – the invites have gone out to the press.

That's the date we expect Apple to announce the iPhone 9 and iPhone 11 – or quite possibly the iPhone XS. We’ve been pretty confident about that launch date for a while now, and there’s not much we don’t know about the design of the new iPhones – but what we still don’t know is what they’ll be called.

The invite gives little away little – the circular 'gather round' logo could just be a nod to the new Apple Campus, where the phone will be launched.

However, the coloring is interesting – if the new bronze look is going to be sticking around, that would be a neat new shade for Apple's phones.

As to what they'll be called, well, that's another matter. Rumors suggest three new iPhones: a refresh of the 5.8-inch iPhone X we're calling iPhone 11, a larger 6.5-inch iPhone 11 Plus, and a 'cheaper' 6.1-inch iPhone 9 with an LCD screen.

All three new iPhones are expected to eschew the traditional home button, last seen in the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus, and utilize Face ID for unlocking and Apple Pay.

Which iPhone will you get and what will it be called?

The 6.1-inch iPhone, which we're calling the iPhone 9, may be the most interesting. It's set to be a more affordable big-screen iPhone, offering a notable jump in display size without too much of a downside (an LCD screen instead of OLED).

Most people won't notice the difference in screens without a side-by-side comparison. Those same people will notice the wider set of expected color choices: white, gray red, blue and orange. We haven't seen bold colors like this since the original iPhone 5C.

The iPhone 9 price may be closer to the 4.7-inch iPhone 8 at $699 (£699, AU$1,079), which would be a significant deal for an iPhone with such a large screen. But the latest word from analysts is that this LCD-equipped iPhone will release later than the OLED versions, possibly in October.

The iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Plus, both with OLED screens, are rumored to come in black and white colors again, and to be joined by newcomer gold (a color Apple is said to have canceled at one point before launching the iPhone X last year). 

The rest of the rumored specs shouldn't be a surprise: Apple's A12 chipset should give us faster performance, and the more expensive phones are likely to have dual-lens 12MP cameras, stainless steel (instead of aluminum frames), and slightly more RAM and storage options. All will run iOS 12 out of the box.

Apple event to have other announcements

This is an iPhone launch event, but Apple is almost certainly going to launch other products on September 12, including two long-overdue accessories.

The AirPower is the wireless charging mat Apple announced on September 12 – last year – at the Steve Jobs Theater. It has faced delays, but may finally be ready now.

We were promised new AirPods (or at least a wireless case) last year, too. We've yet to see those launch, although they may be a stepping stone to the AirPods 2, rumored to launch next year with features like noise canceling and waterproofing. 

With three new iPhones and accessories expected to launch in less than a month, there's a lot of news to unpack in just a few short weeks. We'll be covering every second of the Apple event, so stay tuned for coverage of everything as it happens.

Matt Swider