iPhone and iPad advertisements have always shown the time as 9:42 and 9:41. Why? Steve Jobs has certain idiosyncrasies and much of the reasoning behind his and Apple's choices are kept tightly under tight wrap so we never knew -- until now.
Scott Forstall, SVP of iPhone software at Apple Inc, has finally given the answer. Scott stated that the big reveal of a keynote usually happens at around 40 minutes in, give or take. In order to have the pictures on the iPhone/iPad sync with the audiences' watches the time of 9:42 was chosen for the iPhone and 9:41 for the iPad.
So there you have it, one less secret in the Apple multiverse and as with many secrets, the answer is simple and reasonable. A part of me had hopped that the reasoning behind the magic time 9:42 was something more eccentric, such as it was the time Steve Jobs first child's was born or the secret code to unlocking Flash on the iPhone. Another part of me is amazed by the thought Apple places into every detail of their advertising.
Either way, mystery solved.