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Apple Event ‘leak’ says OS X El Capitan will launch September 30th

As expected, Mac OS X wasn’t the focus of Apple’s latest event, but an interesting “leak” did appear during Craig Federighi’s demo of the iPhone 6S. It shows an email from Phil Schiller that says “The El Capitan ship date is September 30.”

Of course, it’s rather unlikely that this is a real leak. Instead, it’s likely a purposeful and rather clever way for Apple to spread the news without dedicating stage time during Apple’s already length address. A slip up of this magnitude is unlikely, and the email itself is suspiciously lacking in detail.

Assuming that the leak is factual, which is almost certainly the case, it would put the latest version of OS X on Macs just in time for the holiday shopping season.  I was disappointed that Apple did not use its event to even briefly talk about Skylake updates to the MacBook line, but if El Capitan isn’t going to arrive until September 30th, that gives the company time to provide such details outside of its headline presser.

Related: The five best new features in OS X 10.11 El Capitan 

OS X users may feel a bit put out by this, and I’d say that’s understandable. El Capitan was underwhelming, and Apple has resorted to a “leak” to announce the release date of the operating system. Meanwhile, the Watch, iPad, AppleTV and iPhone received sessions about 30 minutes long each. The iPad Pro announcement is particularly galling, since it’s arguably competitive with Apple’s own MacBook.

On the other hand, though, Apple’s past actions have made it clear the company does not mind competing with its own products if it thinks a design might break new ground. I have little doubt that OS X will continue to receive strong support, for now – but an extremely successful iPad Pro could change plans.

But this is all speculation. All we really know right now is that OS X 10.11 will be released on September 30th. Digital Trend’s full review is coming soon.