There seem to be a lot of threads with speculation about when early access will begin. Where is the confusion? They said it would be 7 days prior to official launch a long time ago and advertised using this banner (that seems to be becoming harder and harder to find) http://ffxivrealm.com/threads/ffxiv-date-information.2743/
. Nevermind the information posted by the users here the important tidbit is the picture in the op. This was plastered all over the ARR website for a long time and says 7 days before launch. I understand things are always subject to change but since it was advertised as 7 days prior to launch should we not expect 7 days prior to launch?
Pretty sure this is fake.
The graphic comes not from an SE source but from the EB games website in Australia which contains lots of information about pre-order bonuses etc. After I had seen it on the EB games website, it starting popping up in forums initially with the original source cited. After a few days, it also started appearing alongside this alleged communication from SE. It is possible that a mistake by EB games on their site, was picked up, photoshopped and is now creating quite a stir.
Beta applications are closed until 17 August 2013 which has triggered a widespread acceptance that Beta 4 might commence that day.
This would also match up with Yoshi-P's earlier statement that pre-order will provide early access of "a few days".
Beta 4: 17 August to 24 August
Early access: 24 August to 27 August
Launch: 27 August.
Of course, I am speculating just like everyone else, its just this is what I am preparing myself for so as to avoid any unnecessary disappointment.