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Tuesday, November 23, 2010, 11:35 am PT (02:35 pm ET)

Apple rumored to release iOS 4.3 with app subscriptions in December

On the heels of the release of iOS 4.2, a new rumor claims that Apple is planning to release its next major mobile operating system update — iOS 4.3 — in December, with recurring app subscriptions.

Citing an anonymous source, MacStories on Tuesday reported that Apple plans to release iOS 4.3 in mid-December. The update will reportedly allow users to subscribe to content, like News Corp's purported tablet-only newspaper The Daily.

The latest report corroborates previous rumors that Apple is planning to hold a special media event on Dec. 9 to announce its subscription plans, as well as partnerships with content providers for newspapers and magazines. It cautioned, however, that the release of iOS 4.3 could be delayed due to unexpected issues that forced the delay of iOS 4.2.

The report said Apple hopes to release iOS 4.3 on Dec. 13, after its planned event. In addition to app subscriptions, the software update may also address initial issues with AirPlay.

The report also suggested that Apple's massive data center in North Carolina, the purpose of which remains unknown, could play a part in the release of iOS 4.3. It noted that Monday's release of iOS 4.2 strained Apple's systems, and the company could flip the switch on the server farm to help services like iTunes, MobileMe, activations and more.

MacStories previously reported that Mac OS X 10.7 Lion would adopt iOS interface elements, bringing improvements made in Apple's mobile operating system to the Mac desktop. In October, Apple announced that it would bring iOS features, such as multi-touch gestures and a Mac App Store, with the release of Lion next year.