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New iPhone could be announced next month

Reports surface of Apple ‘special event’ on 10 September

Apple badly needs a winning launch with its next handset.
Apple badly needs a winning launch with its next handset.

Apple Inc will reveal its latest iPhone handset at a 10 September event, according to tech site AllThingsDigital.

While it is not clear if the release will be the successor to the iPhone 5 or Apple's anticipated budget model, much is expected of the Cupertino-based tech firm as it faces stiffer competition from smartphone market-leader, Samsung Electronics.

If the event is for the next iteration of the flagship line, then attention will centre on what Apple can deliver in the way of innovation to an increasingly saturated market. The latest model will likely run iOS 7, announced in June and shown to incorporate a significant change in look and feel. Also, since Apple acquired Florida-based security company Authentec last July, industry pundits and iFans have been speculating on the possible addition of fingerprint authentication for the new handset.

But unless Apple can demonstrate something of note to the industry next month, it could see market share continue to drop.

South Korea's Samsung has driven revenues by adopting a short product cycle, releasing a slew of products onto the market in quick succession. This year has seen the launch of its new flagship in the Galaxy S4, followed by the S4 mini, S4 Zoom and S4 Active.

Apple, meanwhile, has not released a smartphone since the coolly received iPhone 5. In a global market that shows significant revenue potential in emerging markets, Apple has come under increasing pressure to field a model that can appeal to newly affluent consumers in India, China, South America or Africa, looking for their first smartphone.

While Apple is strongly rumoured to be working on wearable technology projects, including the as-yet unconfirmed iWatch, none of these products are expected to be mentioned at the September event.