The iPhone 5 was a landmark phone for 2012, and 2013 promises to be the year of the iPhone 5S. And since Apple doesn't officially confirm anything until everything is absolutely certain (they wouldn't confirm it's going to be Monday until Sunday night), Apple fans are left to scavenge for rumors of all sorts to tide them over until the gadget giant gives official word. (Like these rumored iPhone 5S pics here.) Now that 2013 is almost upon us, what do we know so far about the state of the iPhone 5S? Or rather, what do we THINK we know?

iOS7

iPhone 5S rumors include rampant speculation as to whether or not Apple is going to launch its newest operating system, iOS7. Fox Business is predicting iOS7 will be a part of the iPhone 5S launch. The iPhone 5s release date is rumored to be in June or July, according to Jeffries & Co. Apple analyst Peter Misek. Misek returned from a meeting with apple's Asian suppliers in mid-December and made the release date prediction based on his observations of hardware manufacturing. What can iPhone owners anticipate if the iOS7 rumors turn out to be true? Again, nothing official from Apple, but there are wish lists upon wish lists out there already. The common thread among them is better app management, including customized default apps for basics like emails and calendars and cosmetic changes like hiding apps you never use or creating better, bolder icons.

NFC Capability

NFC (Near Field Communication) is an intriguing mobile technology that is conspicuously absent from the Apple product line. iPhone 5S rumors consistently mention the inclusion of NFC capability in a new device. Think NFC is no a big deal? Then why does rival Samsung take the time to mention it in basically every single commercial? NFC provides that sci-fi gadget feel to a device, and Apple does NOT want to be out-cooled in the Cool Dept. Fortune, Fox Business and CNet are all anticipating NFC tech in the iPhone 5S, making this one of the more credible rumors out there. Samsung has it, Apple doesn't. It doesn't take an industry insider to understand why Apple wants to change that.

IGZO Panels

iPhone 5S rumors are like previous iPhone rumors, they thrive on specs. Specs, specs, specs are what Apple fans and potential consumers want to know about, and the firmest specs rumor for the iPhone 5s comes in the form of IGZO panels. What are IGZO panels?

Short for their chemical composition (indium gallium zinc oxide), IGZO panels are the latest form of LCD technology being developed by Sharp. Prototypes at the IFA consumer electronics trade show in Berlin this year were capable of 498 pixels per inch, easily surpassing the 326 ppi resolution on the iPhone 5. Less a phantom than other rumors, DigiTimes reported on Apple's interest in testing the availability for the new tech for use in its 2013 product line. Although it appears Apple is interested in including IGZO panels in its 2013 product line, the question now is whether or not enough can be manufactured to meet the insane amount of demand Apple is known for creating.

... And More!

In addition to the iOS7, NFC and IGZO rumors, iPhone 5s rumors also include some speculation on other improvements to the product line. The HD camera will likely see an upgrade, taking it into 'super-HD' territory. Some insiders are expecting Apple to unveil a brand new type of OS that works universally between the iMac and mobile platforms, based on research the company has been conducting since 2011, according to CNet. The iPhone 5s may also launch alongside the iWatch, a device designed to integrate controls for your phone, tablet and desktop in a small wristwatch-sized device. Longer battery life may also be in store, in part because of the functionality of IGZO panels.

Overall, the iPhone 5S rumors are making the same promises we always expect from Apple. Better resolution, more power, smarter software and sharper cameras are always a part of the iPhone rumor mix. Why? Probably because Apple consistently delivers all of the above with each new upgrade to the iPhone product line. We'll all be holding our breath until summer 2013, when the iPhone 5s (or is it the iPhone 6?) will (probably) be debuted.