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New releases of Apple’s iOS always cause a stir, but with the removal of Scott Forstall and addition of Jonny Ive to the iOS fold, the next big release of the iPhone and iPad operating system is eagerly anticipated by many. Will iOS 7 look and feel very much like the current release, or will Apple take the opportunity to shake things up a little?

In a Branch chat, Apple commentator John Gruber claimed that iOS 7 is currently running behind schedule, suggesting that there will be more than a few changes from iOS 6 when the seventh iteration of the OS launches later this year.

“What I’ve heard: iOS 7 is running behind, and engineers have been pulled from OS X 10.9 to work on it. (Let me know if you’ve heard this song before.)”

iOS 7 iPhone iPad iPod touch

Perhaps the most interesting part of that sentence is that Apple is so concerned about iOS 7 development overrunning that it has decided to pull engineers from the OS X 10.9 team in order to keep it on track. The iOS ecosystem is fast becoming Apple’s main focus, and this news just illustrates the fact that the platform is currently important enough to potentially slow OS X development.

Apple has done something similar in the past, with the 2007 release of the iPhone seeing a delayed OS X release that year too, thanks to a similar redistribution of engineering talent within Apple.

Gruber goes on to say that iOS 7 will feature a significant overhaul of its user interface, with Ive having considerable input in the new direction the platform is taking.

iPhone-5-splash

In fact, the new look of iOS 7 is being kept so close to Apple’s collective chests that those testing the OS have had a special privacy filter attached to their iPhones, making it impossible to view the screen from an angle. Of course, that’s all well and good until someone leaves one in a bar somewhere!

Also present in the chat is iMore’s Rene Ritchie, who suggests that his sources are pointing towards an iPhone 5S release in or around August. Considering that’s very much in the usual announcement time frame at least, we think that’s a fairly safe bet. Any time from August to October would certainly fit with Apple’s past form, so we see no reason to expect anything to change this time around.

Gruber is usually relatively accurate with such news, and he doesn’t tend to speak unless he’s confident in what he is saying. With that in mind, we’re now particularly looking forward to the first beta of iOS 7!

(source: DaringFireball)

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