Apple's next mobile operating system is showing up increasingly in Web traffic logs ahead of its public debut.
That's according to Onswipe, a startup that makes Web sites more touch-friendly for tablets and smartphones. The company tells TechCrunch the testers running the yet-to-be-released version of the software made up nearly a quarter of people visiting sites that used Onswipe's technology last week.
It's not unusual for future versions of Apple's software to get spotted in traffic logs well ahead of their official announcement into the marketplace. In the case of OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion, that software was seen in traffic logs some four months before it made its official debut. The same thing happened with its predecessor, 10.7 Lion, which began showing up in 2009, a year ahead of its official debut.
With that said, Apple goes to great lengths to hide all traces of its internal activities from the outside world. As detailed by Don Melton -- the former engineering director of Internet technologies at Apple -- such precautions previously included changing how Apple's software identifies itself when tapping into Web servers. That tactic was used inside Apple to hide its Safari Web browser from being identified before its release.
Apple last month said it plans to take the wraps off the next major version of iOS along with its OS X software for desktops and notebooks at its annual developers conference, beginning June 10. Rumors ahead of that unveiling suggest Apple is rushing to revamp the software's look and feel, which has remained much the same since 2007.