Well here's a piece of tantalizing news that you don't hear everyday, especially regarding a company as notoriously secretive as Apple.
According to the French-language paper Le Figaro, famed designer Phillippe Starck mentioned on a radio program that he's been busying himself while working on a "revolutionary" new product that will launch in about 8 months.
French designer Philippe Starck announced today on France Info that it is working with the U.S. computer group Apple in a project “revolutionary” that would emerge in eight months. “Indeed, there is a big project together which will be out in eight months,” said the designer in the show “Everything and its opposite.” Invoking the “religious cult of secrecy” of the California firm, he declined further detail, except to talk about a project “quite revolutionary (…) if not very”.
Also of note is Starck's assertion that he used to visit with Steve Jobs about once a month, either in Palo Alto or elsewhere, where the two would talk about about "all things interesting."
Update: Apple has issued an update via All Things D stating that they are, in fact, not working on any upcoming project with Starck and that the product in question may have actually been a Yacht Starck was working on for Jobs.
So what are we to make of this? Is Starck here referencing the mythical Apple HDTV? A release in 8 months falls in December, which according to some analysts, is right around when Apple is planning to unleash its HDTV on the market. Also, remember that Tim Cook, during Apple's annual shareholder meeting this past February, boldly proclaimed that Apple is working on future products that "will blow your mind."
Those are some pretty weighty words from the typically understated Cook.
Starck's portfolio of design is quite varied, and includes everything from toothbrushes, motorcycles, personal power-generating windmills, furniture, and interior re-designs of trains and fancy hotels. Starck has also dabbled in speaker and headphone design so it's entirely possible that he could be talking about a "revolutionary" pair of headphones.
But something tells me it's something just a tad bigger than that. Perhaps a new HDTV. Perhaps a new redesign of an existing Apple product, or, perhaps, a completely new product entirely.
With the the iPhone 5, by all accounts, set for a September/October release, the end of 2012 promises to be an exciting time for Apple fans.