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Gold iPhone could be unveiled by Apple at event next month

A gold-colored iPhone is on the way, according to a spate of new reports.

By Matthew Shaer / August 19, 2013

File photo of gold bars in the vault of the branch office of precious metal trader Degussa in Zurich April 19, 2013. A gold-colored iPhone may be on the way.

Reuters

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Let's be clear: When those gold iPhone rumors first started burbling up a couple weeks ago, few people believed them. 

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It seemed extremely unlikely that Apple, a company that has prided itself on designing sleek and stately phones, tablets, and laptops (and the occasional brightly-colored MP3 player), would suddenly decide to ditch years of history and release an iPhone with a gaudy finish better befitting a nightclub outfit. We were all skeptical. But maybe we shouldn't have been. 

According to a new report from the typically-reliable John Paczkowski of All Things D, Apple is indeed prepping a gold-colored iPhone. (A source tells Mr. Paczkowski that the finish will be "elegant," and "champagne, not ingot" – in other words, that it won't be a gigantic piece of bling.) And Paczkowski's not the only gold iPhone believer: 9to5 Mac and TechCrunch have also issued similar reports. 

The device would presumably be unveiled at a press event next month. 

Apple, unsurprisingly, is not commenting, and we remain at least a couple of weeks out from an iPhone unveiling event. Still, considering the sheer volume of items on a gold iPhone, it's pretty hard to imagine a scenario in which these rumors don't have at least a patina of truth. 

So what would be the purpose of a gold iPhone, other than to offer consumers a choice besides black and white? Well, over at Gizmodo, Brian Barrett thinks it might have something to do with shaking up interest in the iPhone, which has sold well in recent years, but is widely considered to be in need of some reinvention. 

For consumers, a new iPhone color would be a "clear and present way to show that you've got the best, the latest, the most expensive," Mr. Barrett writes. "In an age when smartphones are increasingly commoditized, a new iPhone is one of the few ways to stand out in a crowd. Apple knows this. Or at least, desperately hopes that it's still true."

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