Looking forward to September with Apple

For the last four years, Apple has reserved the September back-to-school season for upgrading its line of iPod media players. Rumors attributed to "music industry executives" this week indicate that this September will be no different.

A keynote in September gives the company the opportunity to hype up the latest generation of iPods while reminding parents that college kids can get one free if they buy a Mac.

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While there could be a dozen or more Apple rumors flying around at any time, a couple of the most solid (and plausible) ones suggest minor upgrades to the iPod platform: equipping the iPod Touch and Nano with a camera and microphone, while also adopting a new interactive digital album format codenamed "Cocktail".

This afternoon, long-time Apple correspondent Jim Dalrymple reported that his sources were saying the long-rumored Apple tablet, sometimes referred to as a Mac or iPhone netbook, will not be unveiled during the event.

If prior iPod refreshes are any indication, the event will take place in San Francisco, and will be between September 7 and 12. The burning question now is: will Steve Jobs return to give his trademark "one more thing," or is the infirm CEO giving up the spotlight again to Tim Cook and Phil Schiller?

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