iPhone 5 looms as Apple dishes out invites for 12 September event

Apple has sent out invites for a 12 September press event, which is expected to include the launch of the next-gen iPhone.

"It's almost here," according to text placed above a large "12." Tellingly, the "12" on the invite casts a shadow of a "5," suggesting that the iPhone 5 might finally be on the menu.

The event will take place at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco, and things kick off at 18:00 BST (10:00 PST). Stay tuned for all the details.

Rumours about a 12 September event have been circulating for weeks. In addition to the iPhone 5, we'll also likely see a launch date for iOS 6, which Apple previewed earlier this year at WWDC.

There were reports that Apple might also unveil an iPad mini and the next-gen iPod touch next week. But recent rumours claim that those gadgets will get their own event in October. Daring Fireball's John Gruber, who is widely considered to be on top of all things Apple, speculated last month that Apple doesn't want to release two highly anticipated gadgets at the same time.

"I don't think Apple would want reviews of both a new iPhone and new-size iPad appearing at the same time," Gruber wrote. "Why share the spotlight? Why have another Apple product battling with the iPhone for the top spots in news coverage?"