Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) is notoriously secretive. Yesterday was a big day, because the company finally sent out the official media invites to this year’s iPhone event. That ended speculation on the date. It’s September 12. However… before the day was over, the company slipped up in unprecedented fashion. Apple leaked photos of the new iPhone Xs — including the Plus version — and the new Apple Watch Series 4, with a larger display.
AAPL stock popped over 2% on the one-two punch of the official iPhone event date plus the Apple leaked photos of the shiny new products, before settling down and closing up just under 1%.
It’s Official: Apple iPhone Event on September 12
Yesterday morning, Apple sent out media invites confirming the date of this year’s iPhone event: September 12. That validated the prevailing speculation about when the company would hold its biggest — and most important — shindig of the year.
The invite graphic and tagline quickly became the next big puzzle to solve. The image was of gold concentric circles with the caption “gather round.” That could be a reference to the new, circular Apple campus. Or…
Whoops, Apple Leaked Photos of the iPhone Xs and Apple Watch Series 4
Apple is incredibly secretive. The last major slip the company made was way back in 2010. An Apple employee forgot an iPhone 4 in a bar prior to release, and Gizmodo subsequently got its hands on the new iPhone.
Security was tightened up considerably after that slip up.
However, shortly after the iPhone event invites went out yesterday, 9to5 Mac published high quality, marketing images of Apple’s new iPhones and the new Apple Watch. The website hasn’t said how it got ahold of the Apple leaked photos, but guesses include Apple slipping up in testing a stream of the event that was intercepted. However the website pulled it off, these appear to be genuine Apple marketing photos (naturally, the company will not confirm that).
The images confirm the name of this year’s new flagship iPhone: the iPhone Xs. They also show that there will be a Plus-size version as has been rumored. And, they show the new iPhone Xs smartphones sporting a shiny new gold color. Gold is an option the company reportedly tried to release with the original iPhone X last year, but had to abandon because of manufacturing issues.
The combination of an iPhone Xs Plus and a gold option should help ignite iPhones sales, which always has a big upside for AAPL stock.
Also confirmed by the Apple photo leaks is the Apple Watch Series 4 with a 15% larger display. Apple has shrunk the bezels to get more screen space without affecting the overall form factor, so existing Apple Watch bands should still be compatible. With a renewed push by Alphabet’s (NASDAQ:GOOGL) Google division and Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM) to kickstart Wear smartwatches this fall, the new Apple Watch Series 4 will be an important release for AAPL. Its first major redesign — plus the LTE connectivity introduced last year — will be a big help in fighting off a new generation of Wear smartwatches.
That cryptic Apple invite graphic now has other possible interpretations. The round circles closely resemble the concentric design of a new watch face on the Apple Watch Series 4 photo, while the gold seems to be a nod to the new iPhone Xs color option.
In the aftermath of the iPhone Event confirmation and the Apple leaked photos, AAPL stock hit new all-time highs of over $228 before closing just over $225.
Stay tuned for InvestorPlace coverage of this year’s iPhone Event on September 12. We may have seen Apple leaked photos of the iPhone Xs and Apple Watch Series 4, but there are are still many details to learn. Some — like the price and availability of the new iPhones — will likely have an immediate impact on AAPL stock. And who knows what other products will be shown off on stage…
As of this writing, Brad Moon did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.
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