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Apple to release iOS 7 on September 18

Apple mobile device owners can start their downloads next Wednesday.

Now playing: Watch this: Apple announces iOS 7 release date

iOS fans can download the newest operating system for their mobile devices on September 18, Apple announced on Tuesday.

As expected, Apple announced this news from a special event at its headquarters in Cupertino, Calif. There were earlier rumors that Apple would release the update on Tuesday.

"Soon, we're going to witness an event really almost unprecedented in our industry, when virtually overnight hundreds of millions of people download iOS 7," Apple's Senior VP of Software Engineering Craig Federighi said on stage during the event. Apple did release its iOS 7 gold master seed for developers on Tuesday. Typically, the gold master seed is the same version of the software that Apple releases to the public.

CNET's live coverage of Apple's September 10 event

This is Apple's first major redesign of its iOS since the iPhone's debut in 2007. The company's initial unveiling showed off iOS 7's flat icons, bright colors, and translucent visuals. Apple released its sixth beta of the iOS 7 in mid-August, giving developers their last chance to test out their apps on the operating system before it goes live for consumers.

iOS 7 is available only for the iPhone 4 and later, the iPad 2 and later, the iPad Mini, and the fifth generation of the iPod Touch. Here's the full rundown of the system's features.

This is a developing story. Check out the latest on the iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C, and see all of today's Apple news.

Updated, 1:37 p.m. PT : Added Apple's release of the gold master seed version of iOS 7 for developers.