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iPhone 5, iOS 6 may launch in September, says analyst

Apple's next iPhone and next version of iOS could see the light of day as soon as early September, says a KGI analyst.

A banner for WWDC 2012 James Martin/CNET

Apple users waiting for the iPhone 5 and iOS 6 could see both pop up by early September.

"We expect Apple to unveil iOS 6 GM (Golden Master) in early September," KGI analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said in a note obtained by AppleInsider. "Based on the release schedule for iOS 6 GM, there is a very good chance iPhone 5 will start shipping also in early September."

Last year, Apple unveiled the iPhone 4S in October, which meant a slow calendar third quarter as consumers held off purchases in anticipation of the new model. Kicking off the next phone in September would help Apple end the calendar third quarter on a high note, according to Kuo.

So, what does the analyst expect to see in the next-generation iPhone?

Kuo said last week that he's eyeing a 4-inch screen with an aspect ratio of 16:9, a thinner design, and a high-definition front-facing camera. Other analysts also anticipate support for 4G LTE.

Apple will pull the curtains back on iOS 6 this week at its Worldwide Developers Conference, possibly as early as today.

The company has already been touting the new mobile OS at WWDC 2012 with signs proclaiming it "the world's most advanced operating system."

Kuo believes iOS 6 will offer better integration with iCloud and Facebook as well as with the iTunes store and the App store, according to AppleInsider. Also likely to be on tap is a 3D Maps app from Apple itself, which will reportedly replace Google Maps as the default map software on iOS devices.

Apple announced iOS 5 at last year's WWDC, though the new version wasn't available to users until October, which coincided with the launch of the iPhone 4S.

Tune in Monday anytime after 8 a.m. PT for our live coverage of the Apple WWDC keynote speech.

Clarification at 7:30 a.m. PT: All the material related to analyst Ming-Chi Kuo came via AppleInsider.