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Work on the next iPhone and iOS 7 is underway, with test devices now appearing in website and application data logs.
AppleInsider can confirm that it saw visits from a handful of devices running a pre-release build of iOS 7 in the month of December. And iOS developers who contacted The Next Web say they have seen signs of hardware labeled "iPhone6,1" and running iOS 7 in their logs.
Developers who encountered the next-generation iPhones said their IP addresses were identified as emanating from Apple's corporate headquarters in Cupertino, Calif.
The iPhone 5 is identified as "iPhone5,1" or "iPhone5,2" based on the type of LTE radio included in that particular model.
Last year, Apple introduced iOS 6 at its annual Worldwide Developers Conference in June. The software was eventually released to the public in late September alongside the launch of the iPhone 5.
If Apple follows the same release pattern this year, iOS 7 will be formally introduced and provided in beta form to developers in about six months, with the launch of a next-generation iPhone less than four months after that.
Evidence of iOS 6 being tested ahead of its release was found in website logs last March. The data also provided evidence of an iPad toting a Retina display â a device that would eventually launch that same month.
But there is no evidence of any potential new hardware or software features in the latest data logs â just evidence that Apple is working on updates, as is expected.