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Cat out le bag?

Communism v capitalism. Good v evil. Love Marmite v hate Marmite. Civilisation's progress through time has been marked by such titanic battles. And, of course, in recent times in particular, another: secrecy versus openness. And at no time does that last battle rage so violently as in the weeks leading up to the release of a new iPhone.

That might sound like hyperbole, and obviously it is, but not as much so as you'd think. After all, its scoop of a lost iPhone 4 turned Gizmodo into one of the web's top tech sites overnight, so everyone knows the value of a good Apple scoop. And this year, there's more to speculate about: not just what the new iPhone will look like, or what its specs will be, but when the damn thing will actually be released. After all, it was originally expected in June, in line with Apple's previous habit of annual releases, and there's been no word from the company on its ETA at all - officially, it doesn't even exist.

But now it seems a marvellously big-mouthed mobile network executive may have settled at least the second question. One of the few who's in the position to know, Stephane Richard, CEO of France Telecom - the parent company of our Orange - has breezily confirmed that the iPhone 5 will be released on October 15.

Or at least, that's what he seems to have said. 'If we believe what we have been told, the iPhone 5 will be released on 15 October,' Richard told French TV this week. Of course, he could mean 'if we believe what we've read,' which would mean he's none the wiser than the rest of us. But it seems infeasible he hasn't been told something, which makes us think this could be the real deal.

But there are some counter-arguments. As TechRadar points out, 'that date lands on a Saturday – once again making it look like we've got misinformation over the iPhone 5 release date, as Apple prefers making everyone skive off work to go and queue up outside its doors to be among the first to get the new device.'

Could it be that the iPhone 5 will reach vendors on the 15th for release on Monday 17th? Could it be that Mr. Richard was drunk? Could it be this is all a bit too much excitement about a simple phone, at this point, really? All of the above could be true, or it could be that Apple really does expect us to skip Yoga on a Saturday morning to hit its shops. We'll know soon. Definitely. Probably.

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