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Apple's upcoming iPhone event could be way bigger than we thought

Matt Weinberger
bill graham civic auditorium

(Wikimedia Commons)
The Bill Graham Civic Auditorium in San Francisco.

Apple's yet-to-be-announced September iPhone 6S event could be way bigger than we originally thought. 

Usually, Apple holds its product launch events at San Francisco's Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, a reasonably modest 755-seat theater that ensures the company is selective with its guest list.

But according to local San Francisco blog Hoodline, someone's booked the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium — a massive, 7,000-capacity space in the heart of San Francisco's Civic Center neighborhood — for September 4th through the 13th for a private event.

Of course, that's no guarantee that it's Apple reserving the space. But it fits in perfectly with the timeline and previous reports of a September 9th iPhone event, and it also fits with the company's penchant for secrecy. 

Security guards have reportedly been spotted patrolling the building, ensuring nobody gets in. Power generators are stationed outside, taking up a bunch of parking spots. They even closed some of the sidewalks around the building, Hoodline says.

The filing documents say that the space is being used for a "trade show" that will run until the 10th. Twitter, which has its offices very near the auditorium, holds its annual developer conference at the Bill Graham auditorium. But that's not until October. 

Adding to the mystery is the fact that four of the building's windows will be removed to make way for giant fiberglass logos, per the permit application. In those documents, the logo looks like a misshapen star, but that could just be something that Apple's using as a placeholder to throw off the scent. 

bill graham apple star logo

(San Francisco Planning Department)

As Business Insider reader Jörg Rohe points out, this doesn't rule out the possibility that the "star" is just the skeleton or framing hooks for an Apple logo:

bill graham apple logo



So then the question is: Why would Apple need such a massive space?

Maybe, they're simply inviting more people. Maybe, they're going to open it up to the public as a place to try out whatever they announce (a new Apple TV, maybe). It could be anything — or it could not be for Apple at all. 

Still, if it is Apple, this would mark a huge change to the way it announces products. We'll know for sure if and when Apple starts sending out invitations to the reported September 9th event.


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