Apple’s Big Surprise: What Could It Be?

Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) online store was down last night, leading many to question, what is the company up to? The site displayed the same message that was on the site right before Apple unveiled the iPhone 5 last month: We’ll be back. We’re busy updating the Apple Store for you and will be back soon.

That message also preceded the new MacBook Pro launch, and the third-generation iPad before that, so it stands to reason the message would spark interest, excitement, and some confusion. After all, no one has any idea of what Apple might be planning to launch tomorrow. The iPad Mini is expected to be unveiled later this month, at an event on October 17. And it’s far too early for an iPhone 6.

Furthermore, it would be uncharacteristic of the company to launch a new product with so little fanfare — these sorts of things are usually presented at major press events, with the details leaked long before.

Some are speculating that Apple may be doing a Mac refresh. It has been a while since its desktops got an update, but it still seems strange the company wouldn’t hold a press event, and that no news of the refresh would have leaked in advance.

Perhaps the new product is software. The company has been getting a lot of flak for iOS 6, which it released only weeks ago. The new maps app has been at the center of the criticism, having replaced what many consider to be a superior Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) powered map app that for years came pre-installed on all iOS devices.

Whatever Apple has up its sleeves, we’ll just have to wait and see, as it seems Apple has achieved another first: a complete surprise.