Friday, 13 September 2013

Apple officially unveiled the iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C

Apple today officially unveiled the long-rumored iPhone 5C, a stepdown, less-expensive model to the flagship iPhone 5S, which was also announced.
The iPhone 5C will be available in five colors -- white, green, blue, pink, and yellow -- with the 16GB model priced at $99 and the 32GB version costing $199 (with two-year contract). Sadly, yes, there is no supercheap contract-free version.

Design and feel 
As expected, the phone has a polycarbonate (plastic) back. Jony Ive, Apple's senior vice president of design, described the iPhone 5C as "beautifully, unapologetically plastic. Multiple parts have been reduced to a single polycarbonate component whose service is continuous and seamless."
How does it feel in the hand? Remarkably solid and dense, more like a candy-lacquered metal phone than a "plastic phone." The 5C has a steel frame under the polycarbonate, and the smooth finish feels very hand-friendly. It also feels heavier than the iPhone 5. Hopefully it'll stay scratch-resistant, because that extra-shiny look is a large part of its charm. It almost feels like an iPhone that's been given a custom hard-shell paint finish, or had a skin-thin case permanently bonded to it.
The curved edges are a bit of a return to the older plastic iPhones, but the phone's squarer design still comes through: it has a flat back. It's a shinier, smoother, thicker device than last year's fifth-gen iPod Touch.
The colors are clean, somewhat pastel and vibrant, and Apple's separately-sold $29 microfiber cases studded with large holes come in different color schemes, allowing for mix-and-match patterns. The case's design feels like a similar material to Apple's iPad Smart Covers, and snaps over the back snugly. The design-your-own color process has a similar feel to the Moto X's, and it'll be interesting to see what other cases toy with colors and exposed cut-out designs. 

Specs: iPhone 5-esque 
If you're wondering what makes a 5C different from the now-discontinued iPhone 5, it's basically this: new colors and feel, better front-facing FaceTime HD camera, and a slightly larger battery. Oh, and there's no 64GB version: you'll have to get an iPhone 5S for that.
Some of the specs Apple is highlighting include an A6 processor, an 8-megapixel camera with a 3x video zoom in-camera app, an improved front-facing HD camera, and 802.11 a/b/g/n dual band Wi-Fi, as well as "more LTE bands for world coverage." 
The iPhone 5C weighs slightly more than the iPhone 5 but seems to offer slightly better battery life.

From a specs standpoint, the iPhone 5C appears to be a slight upgrade over the existing iPhone 5. However, at 4.65 ounces, the iPhone 5C also weighs more than the 3.95-ounce iPhone 5. 


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