A Look Back At Apple’s iPhone And iPod Media Event Invites [Gallery]

A Look Back At Apple’s iPhone And iPod Media Event Invites [Gallery]

Apple is pretty much the most cryptic company on earth, so everything related to Apple is heavily scrutinized, including the media invites it sends out to select members of the press. An Apple invite is like a confirmation from above — months of speculation and wishful thinking is confirmed or shot down in a single moment.

Apple event invites are often read like magical tea leaves; hints are usually contained in the invite itself that foreshadow what to expect.

Today Apple sent out invites for its iPhone event next Wednesday, September 12th, 2012. We thought it would be as good a time as any to take a look back at Apple’s past iPhone and iPod invites from the last several years, starting with the original iPhone.

A Look Back At Apple’s iPhone And iPod Media Event Invites [Gallery]

WWDC 2007: iPhone release date announced

Among other announcements, Apple confirmed the June 29th release date for the original iPhone. The device was first unveiled by Steve Jobs earlier in the year at Macworld. Nothing much to the invite itself other than the obvious reference to Time Machine in OS X.

A Look Back At Apple’s iPhone And iPod Media Event Invites [Gallery]

2007 fall music event: iPod touch, Classic, and nano

Keeping in line with tradition, Apple held a music-themed event in September of 07. The first iPod touch was announced alongside the iPod Classic and short, squarish iPod nano.

A Look Back At Apple’s iPhone And iPod Media Event Invites [Gallery]

WWDC 2008: iPhone 3G and the App Store

At WWDC 2008, Apple’s event invite was pretty straightforward: there were going to be multiple announcements. The App Store was introduced alongside the iPhone 3G. Both were pretty big deals, but the invite directly hinted at neither.

A Look Back At Apple’s iPhone And iPod Media Event Invites [Gallery]

2008 fall music event: skinny iPod nano, updated iPod touch

Apple’s 2008 fall event also revolved around music and the iPod. The fourth-gen iPod nano, second-gen iPod touch, updated iPod Classic, iPhone OS 2.1, and new iPod Shuffle colors were all introduced. “Let’s rock,” indeed.

A Look Back At Apple’s iPhone And iPod Media Event Invites [Gallery]

2009 March event: iPhone OS 3.0 preview

An unnaturally-timed March 2009 event was held to preview iPhone OS 3.0 (this was before “iOS”). The new SDK introduced landmark features like cut, copy, and paste, and the event set the stage for the public release of iPhone OS 3.0 later that summer. There was no holding back with the invite — Apple didn’t seem to care that the world knew what was happening beforehand.

A Look Back At Apple’s iPhone And iPod Media Event Invites [Gallery]

WWDC 2009: iPhone 3GS and iPhone OS 3.0

Apple decided to let the cat right out of the bag with its WWDC 2009 invite. The 3GS was plainly depicted and the app grid layout suggested that Apple would be heavily pushing developers to create apps for the App Store.

A Look Back At Apple’s iPhone And iPod Media Event Invites [Gallery]

2009 fall music event: iPod nano with camera and iPhone OS 3.1

Apple’s 2009 fall music event kept in line with tradition. The iPad nano got a camera, and iPhone OS 3.1 was released. A pretty boring event overall.

A Look Back At Apple’s iPhone And iPod Media Event Invites [Gallery]

2010 WWDC: iPhone 4 and iOS 4

WWDC 2010 was all about iOS, apps and the iPhone 4. iOS 4 was unveiled with over 200 new features, and Steve Jobs gave the world the iPhone 4 that had been previously leaked online. The invite graphic depicts the focus Apple was starting to place on the success of the App Store.

A Look Back At Apple’s iPhone And iPod Media Event Invites [Gallery]

2010 fall music event: trio of new iPods

Apple’s 2010 fall music event introduced a trio of new iPod models, including a smaller, squarer iPod shuffle with buttons and a tiny iPod nano with touchscreen. The iPod touch also got an update. The invite itself revolved around the obvious music theme, including the surprise Ping announcement.

A Look Back At Apple’s iPhone And iPod Media Event Invites [Gallery]

2011 fall event: iPhone 4S

As one of Apple’s most cryptic invites to date, the 2011 fall graphic was all about iPhone. Apple ended up unveiling the current iPhone 4S, updated iPods, iCloud, and the public release of iOS 5. The iPod’s usual fall event timeframe took a backseat to iOS and the iPhone.

A Look Back At Apple’s iPhone And iPod Media Event Invites [Gallery]

2012 fall event: iPhone 5?

The invite for this year’s fall event was just sent out, and it definitely suggests that we’ll see the long-awaited iPhone 5. Has Apple given the name away already? It would appear to be so.

  • SamuelBrock

    I find it interesting that we haven’t seen a music event for 2 years. Yes I know that iPod is taking a back seat, but for how long?

  • Tallest_Skil

    I find it interesting that we haven’t seen a music event for 2 years. Yes I know that iPod is taking a back seat, but for how long?

    Ever. The iPod is old hat. People don’t want PMPs when their phone is also one.

  • ken147

    Ever. The iPod is old hat. People don’t want PMPs when their phone is also one.

    I do.

  • Moss

    I find it interesting that we haven’t seen a music event for 2 years. Yes I know that iPod is taking a back seat, but for how long?

    They’ve only missed one year so far, they’ll probably update them this year

  • SimplyFalak

    That WWDC 2010 invite looks just gorgeous.

  • Len Williams

    I have an 8GB iPod nano that I got as a replacement for my original first gen nano on the recent exchange program. I even bought a watch band for it so I could wear it on my wrist. All that said, I use my iPhone 4S for everything, including music listening when I go out for my daily bike rides. My nano hasn’t been listened to for months, and I should probably at least say hi so it’s not so lonely. As for the upcoming iPod, iPhone event, I’m excited to see what they’ve done with the iPhone 5. I’ve already locked in a buy-back price of $295 for my 4S with gazelle.com, so here’s hoping the iPhone 5 is even more amazing than the 4S.

  • SupaMac
    I find it interesting that we haven’t seen a music event for 2 years. Yes I know that iPod is taking a back seat, but for how long?

    Ever. The iPod is old hat. People don’t want PMPs when their phone is also one.

    Wrong. I know plenty of people, myself included, who use the iPhone for everything but music (with the exception of Pandora, Rdio, Spotify, etc.) and use an iPod classic exclusively for music. Why waste the space on the iPhone and the extra $1-200 for a 32-64GB iPhone, when you can get a 160GB classic for $250 (or cheaper)?

    Now, if Apple would step it up and make the iPhone 120-250GB+, i would probably be with you. But that hasn’t happened in the 5 years of the device and it doesn’t seem like it will happen anytime soon. (Hope I’m wrong).

  • Elliot George

    Awesome post, but could you include even more. The ones for releases of OS X including Lion, and iOS, including iOS6 and iCloud are the most interesting in terms of hidden meaning.

  • SamDS

    IPAD NANO?????? 2009 event description.

  • SophiaLawrence

    Intersting and exciting fun of Sticky Notes with reminders app at itunes store at http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/sticky-notes-with-reminders/id545238012?ls=1&mt=8

    Sticky Notes provides an easy and stylish way to manage your tasks and Todo lists on your iPhone or iPad.

    You can create stickies, drag & drop to anywhere on the screen, choose sticky styles & backgrounds, add voice reminders and share your stickies through email or Facebook or save it to your photo library and set it as your iPhone or iPad’s background or lock screen.

  • Jonathan Ober
    I find it interesting that we haven’t seen a music event for 2 years. Yes I know that iPod is taking a back seat, but for how long?

    Ever. The iPod is old hat. People don’t want PMPs when their phone is also one.

    Wrong. I know plenty of people, myself included, who use the iPhone for everything but music (with the exception of Pandora, Rdio, Spotify, etc.) and use an iPod classic exclusively for music. Why waste the space on the iPhone and the extra $1-200 for a 32-64GB iPhone, when you can get a 160GB classic for $250 (or cheaper)?

    Now, if Apple would step it up and make the iPhone 120-250GB+, i would probably be with you. But that hasn’t happened in the 5 years of the device and it doesn’t seem like it will happen anytime soon. (Hope I’m wrong).

    I’d also include in this parents with kids that they dont want them to have a full fledged phone but an iPod touch will do just fine.

    I am thinking that this event will have three items, like every good speech with an unveiling of the ios6, iPod line (which there will be three of) and iphone line (which will also have three models/six if you could white and black versions). Rule of three here’s to hoping it’s new iPod touches and nanos and shuffles.

  • Tallest_Skil

    Now, if Apple would step it up and make the iPhone 120-250GB+, i would probably be with you. But that hasn’t happened in the 5 years of the device and it doesn’t seem like it will happen anytime soon.

    Yeah, that certainly hasn’t been because it’s physically impossible to get chips that big at a price less than the entirety of the device, or anything. No, Apple’s just not “stepping it up” enough…

  • technochick

    Sorry but there was NOTHING cryptic about the Fall 2011 invite. the Icons are very clear. on the 4th, 10am, at Cupe, talking about the iPhone.

    now this year is and isn’t cryptic. We know it’s on the 12th so that’s likely what that means.
    But the 5 could be

    1. the iphone 5
    2. five products/services being talked about (with the rumors of a new iPad, new ipods, itunes, etc possible)
    3. five days until it’s available (unlikely since that’s a sunday)
    4. five weeks until it’s available (maybe but that seems like a long time)
    4. Oct 5th (possible, I could see them doing the launch on the anniversary of Steve’s death as a kind of memorial since the iphone was one of his big things)

About the author

Alex HeathAlex Heath has been a staff writer at Cult of Mac for three years. He is also a co-host of the CultCast. He has been quoted by the likes of the BBC, KRON 4 News, and books like "ICONIC: A Photographic Tribute to Apple Innovation." If you want to pitch a story, share a tip, or just get in touch, additional contact information is available on his personal site. Twitter always works too.

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