Apple is about to release a red version of the iPhone 8, according to multiple rumours.

The new colour – the first new addition to the lineup since the phone was released in September – will come as part of Apple's work with Product Red. The company has released a range of different red products, all of which benefit research into HIV and Aids.

The first time the red colour came to the iPhone was with the 7 and 7 Plus, which were released in March of last year. If the rumour is correct, the red version of the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus will come almost exactly a year later.

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The rumour was first revealed by MacRumors, which claimed to have seen a memo from Vodafone that claimed pre-orders on the new handset would open on 9 April. The suggestion has since been confirmed by multiple other reports, and chimes with suggestions earlier in the year that the company was working on a new colour for the handset.

The phone currently comes in the flagship rose gold, silver and black. That is a relatively limited set of colours for iPhones – the iPhone 7 that it replaced came in two different versions of black, for instance, and also received a red update.

Apple has also long been rumoured to be working on a gold version of the iPhone X, which currently only comes in white or black. But the recent reports don't mention any update to the more premium iPhone at all, and it is unlikely that it will get updated at the same time.

The company is also expected to unveil its long-awaited AirPower wireless charging mat. That was first unveiled alongside the new iPhones in September, and then rumoured for a March release – but more than six months have now gone without an update on when the special charger will be released.

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