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Apple granted FCC ID for at least one new iPhone model due shortly

A new file found inside the latest iOS 5 beta reveals that regulatory information for an unannounced "N94" iPhone model has already been assigned to Apple, suggesting the smartphone maker is on the verge of introducing its new family of handsets.

More specifically, an image named “RegulatoryInfo-N94AP@2x~iphone.png” has been discovered by a MacRumors reader in the pre-release software, indicating an iPhone called N94 has been granted Federal Communications Commission (FCC) ID "BCG-E2430A."

Such regulatory information, which is only awarded to finalized products, can be seen by users on any iOS device by going to Settings > General > About > Regulatory. For instance, the GSM and CDMA iPhone 4 versions each have their own distinct FCC identifiers, BCG-E2380A and BCG-E2422A, respectively.

The identifier "N94," a codename previously referenced in Apple’s iOS 5 SDK and on leaked iPhone components, is believed to coincide with a so-called "iPhone 4S," or a cheaper iOS smartphone that's rumored to make an introduction alongside a more advanced iPhone 5.

The device's new FCC has yet to turn up in the agencies equipment authorization database, as MacRumors notes that such entries traditionally do not appear until the day the products are announced.

Apple is also known for asking the FCC not to share with the public certain confidential documents it submits as part of the agencies approval process until the day the company announces the product, as those documents often contain photos and detailed descriptions of the products design.

Apple is expected to announce its new iPhone models at a special media event this fall, with recent reports suggesting a potential launch date for the new devices for early October.