iPhone 5 to debut Oct. 4

After being the subject of whispers, rumors and speculation for months, it appears the iPhone 5 is finally ready to make its debut. (Edit: Or, you know… maybe not.)Iphone-topcorner

Apple has confirmed plans for a press event at its Cupertino, Calif. Headquarters on Oct. 4, where it’s expected to unveil the next iteration of its popular smartphone.

There are plenty of rumors about what that phone will offer. Among the most prevalent are longer battery life, an 8 MP camera and a faster processor. While the iPhone 4 has been on the market for some 15 months, demand for the phone has remained strong, giving Apple leeway to announce the new version a bit later than it usually does. (New iPhone announcements typically come in June.)

Of interest at the conference, beyond the iPhone 5 itself, will be what media partners Apple chooses to bring onstage to sell the device’s benefits. The chance of an updated iPod also being among the announcements is worth keeping an eye on as well, especially given the recent launch of Spotify and that service’s close integration with Facebook, a partnership that could make it a serious competitor to Apple’s cloud plans.