Secret Apple launch planned for 19 May?

There's nothing quite like an Apple rumour to get the online world a buzz with excitement. And the latest rumour is that Apple has a special event planned this week - on 19 May.

BGR is reporting a "solid Apple source" as stating that "something big" is being planned for 19 May, as it's the 10-year anniversary of the opening of the first Apple Stores (in McLean, Virginia and Glendale, California).

The source claims that Apple staff are being lined up for extra night shifts where they'll have to lock their phones away whilst working and sign a NDA with Apple.

The Apple Stores have received "hardware to install" for the event - although nothing is to be opened by anyone yet and Apple staff have received password protected training instructions via email.

Black curtains are also apparently going to be put up to stop the frenzied fanboys from snooping in.

It's all very cloak and dagger.

So what could the event be in aid of?

The iPad 3 is highly unlikely as it's far too soon for a follow up to the 2. The iPhone 5 could be on the cards, although all indications point to a September release for the next-gen handset. Mac OS X Lion is a good shout - a "Summer 2011" release is stated by Apple (May isn't quite summer though).

It may well be that  Apple uses the date to go live with its iCloud services - although launching a platform that doesn't really need a physical store presence would be a strange thing to launch in Apple Stores.

Our best bet then? A one-day sale, Debenhams-stylee. They could call it the iCross sale...

What do you guys think? What has Cupertino Computers got up its sleeve for the 19th (if anything)? Give us your thoughts using the comments below.