Cult of Mac
Strochlic, Nina, Newsweek
Byline: Nina Strochlic
Get ready for the new iPhone.
It's that time of year. A chill is coming, and the trees are losing their leaves: it's Apple season. Around the globe, fans of the company's iThings are buzzing about the latest and greatest gadget from the most fervently worshiped brand in the business.
Rumors are swirling that the iPhone 5 will have updated software and a larger screen--half an inch larger, according to leaked pictures. It won't be a revolution, but that doesn't matter. Even these seemingly minor tweaks have sent anticipation through the roof. A recent survey by ChangeWave found that demand for the new phone is "strikingly higher" than for previous models. According to M.G. Siegler, partner at tech venture-capital firm CrunchFund, Apple enthusiasts aren't expecting a design, or even a software, overhaul, just a continuously more polished version. He expects sales of the newest iPhone to be "insane."
Just as fans wait for hours for midnight movie premieres, Apple devotees have made a ritual of iPhone-release eve, this time anticipated to be on Sept. 21, with a product unveiling the week before. Hard-core fans spend the rest of the year on online forums, meet-ups, and even a private dating site called Cupidtino (which promises to match you with "an Apple fanboy or girl"). Product releases are a chance to move that community offline. …