Today Apple announced two new iPhones.
“In the past, when we announced a new price, we lowered the price of the current iphone, making it even more accessible," Tim Cook said on stage. "This year, we’re not going to do that.”
THE iPHONE 5C
The iPhone 5C is a colourful, lower-cost edition of Apple's flagship iPhone device. The front is all-glass and the back is crafted from hard-coated polycarbonate.
The iPhone 5C features a four-inch Retina screen. It's powered by an A6 chip designed by Apple. It boasts an even higher capacity battery than the iPhone 5. It has an 8-megapixel camera and streams FaceTime in HD.
The iPhone 5C will cost $99 for a 16GB model on a two-year contract in the US or $199 for a 32GB model.
“The 5C is beautifully, unapologetically plastic," says lead designer Jony Ive.
Preorders open September 13. Ships in Canada September 20.
THE iPHONE 5S
Apple has also unveiled the iPhone 5S, which the company says may be "the most forward-thinking device ever." And yes, it comes in a gold/champagne colour. "It's the gold standard in phones," Apple puns.
The iPhone 5S uses a brand new chip called the A7. It's the first and only such 64-bit CPU in a smartphone, according to Apple. “Today, we’re going to see that Apple will move the mobile computing world from 32-bit to 64-bit in one day," says Phil Schiller on stage.
The new A7 chip is up to two times faster in processing and graphics. It's the biggest leap forward in performance for any iPhone update, according to Apple.
The iPhone 5S also has a second chip called the M7, a "motion processor" that continuously measures motion data, accelerometer, and gestural data, which Apple says will open up a "whole new generation of health and fitness applications."
The smartphone's battery life is "better than the iPhone 5," Apple notes, though only minimally. The camera is also improved, with a larger aperture and active sensor area. As well, using image stabilization the camera automatically finds the sharpest of multiple pictures when you snap a single photo. And it features a "hybrid flash" with two LEDs—one white, one amber—and analyzes lighting to adjust the colour of the flash accordingly. Further, there's burst mode, through which the camera can snap up to 10 frames per second, and Slow-mo, which records HD video at 120 frames per second to allow to slow motion video at full clarity.
The iPhone 5S has a new feature called Touch ID, which reads fingerprints at a detailed level, because Apple says that up to half of people don't bother setting up a passcode, even though their phones store so much personal data. The software reads fingerprints at a 500-pixels-per-inch resolution and is capable of scanning sub-epidermal skin layers. It's also smart and gets better at reading your prints with time. Apple says that all fingerprint data is encrypted and locked in the device's A7 chip—never accessible by software, stored on servers, or backed up to iCloud.
The iPhone 5S will cost $199 for a 16GB model on a two-year contract in the US. $299 for the 32GB and $399 for the 64GB. Ships in Canada on September 20.
The iPhone 4S will now be available for free on two-year contracts, Apple says.