We've been hearing that the next iPhone will be getting a smaller dock connector for quite some time now, though its reported size ranges from anywhere to 19-pins all the way down to 8. We've got another one to toss into the mix today, as 9to5Mac speculates that the new iPhone could be getting a 9-pin dock connector. Apparently a reference to such a connector lies hidden in the iOS 6 beta.
To get a little more specific, a reference to "9Pin" was discovered in a section of the OS that details the hardware found on iOS devices. Since the section isn't specifically about the new iPhone and instead about the broader range of iOS devices, it seems possible that this 9-pin connector could become a feature on future iPads as well (iPad Mini anyone?).
True, it isn't that much to work with, but it does seem to add up. Given the massive amount of speculation, it seems almost certain that Apple will be implementing a new, smaller dock connector soon, and this reference to "9Pin" in the iOS 6 beta may have just given away the company's plans. Of course, we won't know for sure until makes the announcement, so until that happens, it's probably best to stay on the skeptical side of things.
As for when that announcement will actually happen, Apple is expected to hold an event on September 12. It's there that many think Apple will unveil a handful of new devices, including the iPad Mini and the new iPhone. There could even be more device reveals beyond those two, so if Apple is planning to implement a new dock connector, we'll probably hear about there. Keep it tuned to SlashGear for more information, and be sure to check out our story timeline below for details about Apple's rumored dock connector switch.