Apple's '9:42' Mystery Solved
And it's kind of a letdown: the time of the product rollout
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 10, 2010 2:46 PM CDT
Apple CEO Steve Jobs shows off the new iPad during an Apple event in San Francisco, Wednesday, Jan. 27, 2010.   (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma)

(Newser) – The question has vexed tech bloggers for years, writes Paul McNamara: Why do all Apple photos show the iPhone with a time of 9:42? The company has never explained, so surely it must be a riddle. And now the iPad shows 9:41? Well, the truth is finally out—a software developer spotted a company VP at an Apple store and just asked—and it's really quite boring, reports NetworkWorld. It's a guess at what time the product will be officially rolled out.

"We design the (product launch) keynotes so that the big reveal of the product happens around 40 minutes into the presentation," says VP Scott Forstall. "When the big image of the product appears on screen, we want the time shown to be close to the actual time on the audience's watches." The iPhone's 9:42 turned out to be "pretty accurate, so for the iPad, we made it 41 minutes. And there you are—the secret of the magic time."