Summer has come to mean a lot more than cookouts and baseball to tech enthusiasts, it has also come to represent the release of a new iPhone. For the past several summers (at least in the Northern hemisphere), Apple has announced a new version of its popular cell phone and then released it in either June or July. However, according to the latest rumors, this summer shall be without that particular event happening.

Just as there were was no joy in Mudville when mighty Casey struck out, it seems that iPhone fans may be finding disappointment this summer.  When the announcement went this morning for this year’s WWDC (World Wide Developer Conference), it seemed to go out of its way to stress that the event would be focused on software.  As the official press release stated, the conference would focus on “the future of iOS and Mac OS X.”  Note that there no mention of hardware.

The Loop used this as a jumping off point that the iPhone 5 would be missing from this year’s event, and then MacRumors took a swing at it to run the bases.  Putting together the pieces from an analyst report issued last month, and fresh rumors from Macotakara that the supply orders needed to release a new handset this summer have yet to materialize, the odds are looking bad.

The good news is that the iPhone 5 is definitely coming, and the delay may have more to do with the Verizon iPhone having just launched a short time ago.  Releasing a new version in the summer could have quite possibly angered a lot of new customers as they had just purchased a phone.  Holding the release off to a possible Sept. release means AT&T customers will only be a little bit late getting an update, and the Verizon customers, while still under a year from release, will feel better about their purchase.

While the phone itself may be delayed, that hasn’t stopped rumors from springing up of what we might expect from the next iteration of the popular iPhone family.  4G speeds seems to be a popular refrain, but there have also been talk of a larger screen and an all aluminium back panel (see our artist’s rendering below), only slightly changing the overall look of the phone.

iPhone 5 Black (Front and Side)

We’ll see how these rumors play out over the next few months, but it does appear possible that Apple is going to change its release cycle for the iPhone, and that may not be the worst thing in the world now that they are dealing with multiple carries in the United States.

What do you think?  Will Apple shift the iPhone to a fall release?

[via MacRumors, source The Loop]