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iPhone 5 Buzz Suggests Curved Design, Gesture Area, August Introduction?

It’s that annual summer ritual: guessing the details of the next iPhone. This year Apple (NSDQ: AAPL) broke from tradition by pushing everything back a few months, but as the weather heats up so has the discussion of what the company may have in store for the iPhone 5.

New tidbits of info from BGR and This Is My Next suggest that earlier rumors of a new curved design for the iPhone 5 are bearing out. Both outlets say they’ve received word that iPhone case makers are going to have to redesign their wares in order to accommodate the new shape of the phone when it goes on sale later this year.

Another interesting morsel from This Is My Next’s report: the single button on the iPhone 5 will now be surrounded by a “gesture area.” It’s not clear exactly what you’ll be able to do with gestures in that area, as there was nothing revealed earlier this month about iOS 5 that could take advantage of that space, but Apple could be building it in now for use down the road.

So when will the iPhone 5 arrive? Apple usually holds a music-related event in early September to show off new iPods ahead of the holiday season, and for a while it seemed pretty logical that the next iPhone could make its debut at that event. But BGR now thinks that Apple could be planning a separate event for late August to unveil the new iPhone. Either way, the phone still probably won’t be available until later in September, given the length of time that Apple usually schedules between the introduction of a new operating system version and the launch of the hardware, as to give developers time to make sure their applications will run smoothly on the new OS.