Apple posted its results for 3Q 2013 earlier this week, and its guidance numbers for the next quarter might give us a clue as to when the next generation iPhone might launch.iPhone-5S-iPhone-6-Couleurs-908x865.jpg

For the fourth fiscal quarter, 2013, Apple expects revenue between $34 billion and $37 billion and a gross margin in the range of 36 to 37 percent. Compare this to the results for 3Q, where Apple posted revenue of $35.3 billion and a gross margin of 36.9 percent.

According to BTIG analyst Walt Piecyk, Apple can’t post such numbers in the next quarter unless there are new products to sustain the revenue:

“We don’t think that Apple can hit its newly issued revenue guidance for the September quarter unless it launches new products. After delivering $35 billion in revenue in the June quarter, management guided to $34-$37 billion next quarter. Revenue would more typically drop multiple billions if the company had no new products planned.”

Apple’s fourth quarter ends on 28th of September, and given the gross margin estimate the new product is very likely the next-gen iPhone:

“The margin guidance also likely indicates that the new product launch this quarter will be an iPhone and not a lower margin iPad. While new iPhones are lower margin at launch, they are still higher margin than iPads.”

The iPhone coming out in September fits in well with Tim Cook’s statement about Apple having a “very busy fall”  this year.

Earlier today, there were rumors that Apple could launch the new iPhone and the rumored low-cost iPhone on September 6th. However, Jim Dalrymple of The Loop, who has an impeccable record when it comes to Apple related rumors, and famous for his one word responses, has categorically refuted the news with his typical “Nope.”

Since fall begins on September 22nd, Apple will probably launch the new iPhones in late September, and unveil them at an event in mid-September.

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