Apple announced a couple new iPhones this week: iPhone 5S starting at $199 with two year contract or $649 without contract and iPhone 5C starting at $99 with two year contract or $549 without contract.
There was a lot of talk about the iPhone 5C carrying a price that would satisfy price-conscious customers in fast growing overseas market. This assumption was made, because plastic phones carry a stigma of feeling cheap. In China, where wireless carriers don’t subsidize phones, the iPhone 5C is going to cost 4,488 yuan ($733), which is the average month’s Salary in China or three months of a bus driver’s monthly salary. Apple’s new 5C was rumored to be the answer to China, India, and more importantly the answer to Android’s 80% percent global smartphone market share. What analysts need to understand, who manifested this rumor, is if Apple would have made their iPhone 5C out of wood, it would still probably cost $549 without contract.
In an interview with China’s Shanghai Evening News, Senior Vice President Worldwide Marketing at Apple – Phil Schiller – said that “Despite the popularity of cheap smartphones [in China], this will never be the future of Apple’s products“.
In reality, the iPhone 5C is no cheaper for consumers than Apple’s last year’s model, the iPhone 5, would have been if Apple didn’t discontinue it following Tuesday’s announcement. That’s right, Apple skipped right over obsolete and went straight for the chopping block by discontinuing the iPhone 5 probably to reduce consumer confusion between the two models.
It makes sense Apple would discontinue the iPhone 5, because the iPhone 5C only carries a few new functional advantages over the iPhone 5. However, the iPhone 5C doesn’t pretend to be something completely borrowed. Sporting a hard-coated polycarbonate shell with steel-reinforced frame that doubles as an antenna, it also carries an upgraded camera with larger pixels and an improved backside illumination sensor designed to increase sensitivity in low light. It is a tiny bit heavier and thicker, but not by too much. Also, lets not forget, this particular model is now available in 5 colors: white, red, blue, green and yellow that can also be complimented by a variety of color silicone cases for added flair.
As anticipated, Apple also announced their latest flagship model, iPhone 5S with tons of new tech on the inside. Think of the iPhone 5S as a part two since the ‘S’ models look just like its predecessor, but feature brand new hardware including but not limited to:
- A7 chip with 64-bit architecture (the first of any mobile phone)
- M7 motion co-processor continuously measures motion data, accelerometer, gyroscope, compass — enables a new generation of health and fitness apps.
- Touch ID: Fingerprint identity sensor with 170 microns, 500ppi resolution, scans sub-epidermal skin layers and can read in any finger orientation.
- 8 megapixels with 1.5µ pixels
- Five-element lens with ƒ/2.2 aperture: 15% larger active sensor area.
- True Tone flash with two LEDs, one is cool and white, other is warm and amber. Backside illumination sensor for Better Low-Light Performance
- HD video at 720p at 120 frames per second
- Slow motion mode with 120 frames per second.
- 10 frame per second burst mode
- colors: Slate, gold and silver.
I was disappointed Apple didn’t announce the iPhone 5S with 128GB of flash storage as it was heavily rumored, but deep down inside I feel like they will very soon. This was something I really wanted since I will be upgrading from an iPhone 4 to an iPhone 5S. I just can’t take the ‘broken’ home button on my phone anymore, so I hope to grab one during the launch weekend.
The iPhone 5S is priced at $199 for 16GB, $299 for 32GB and $399 for 64GB. Add an extra $450 to the price if you want it without contract. You won’t be able pre-order the iPhone 5S believe it or not, but it will be available for purchase in-store and online September 20. You can pre-order the iPhone 5C starting Friday, September 13 or you can pick it up as well on September 20 at a local Apple Store or authorized retailer.
Don’t forget iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, and 5th gen iPod Touch are all eligible to have its operating system (iOS) upgraded to version 7 on September 18 for free. One of the many awesome benefits of a hardware and software marriage thanks to Apple supporting their devices as old as 4 generations. The iOS update will be available “over the air” and welcomes over 200 new features to make your aging phones feel new again should you not want to upgrade to a new model.
Stay tuned for Apple’s iPad announcement most likely to occur in October. There’s still lots more from Apple before the holidays kick in.