The September 10th Apple announcement featured the start of a new way forward for Apple, the introduction of not one but two new phones in the iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C. The iPhone 5S, like the 4S, will be an incremental update on the iPhone software, while the 5C will be a brand-new, plastic-backed smartphone that will be offered in a variety of bright, bold colors. With the release of the 5C, Apple has catered to growing market demands for a more affordable iPhone.
Apple claims the iPhone 5S is the most “forward thinking” iPhone yet, and the specs don’t lie. The iPhone 5S appears to be a nice upgrade on the iPhone 5, featuring a faster CPU, more RAM, and a much improved 12-megapixel camera. The new A7 processor is at the top of its class, and it may be awhile before iOS applications take full advantage of its raw power. The M7 “motion coprocessor” may be even more powerful than the A7, designed to collect data from the accelerometer, gyroscope, compass and others without draining valuable battery life. In terms of new features, the home button has been replaced with a fingerprint reader for enhanced security. With Apple’s Touch ID fingerprint security system, your unique fingerprint can now be used as your password and is stored locally on the device hardware. Fingerprints may also be used to verify your App Store purchases in addition to unlocking your home screen. The iPhone 5S is offered in graphite/black, silver/white, and the highly anticipated gold/white color variants.
The iPhone 5C is essentially a slightly curvier, plastic-backed iPhone 5 at a much lower price. Until now, Apple has relied on their discounted older models to capture the mid-range smartphone market, but the 5C symbolizes a new direction towards increased Apple marketshare. In terms of features, the lower cost 5C is the same great phone as the iPhone 5, showcasing a 4-inch retina display and 8-megapixel camera. Colorwise, the iPhone 5C comes in green, blue, yellow, pink and white, which seems to target the market’s younger generation of smartphone users.
Overall, it seems Apple’s new dual-release strategy is a great step forward. The mid-range market and first time Apple users will love the lower cost 5C, and the 5S appears to be a glimpse into the future of smartphone performance and computing power. Time will tell all, but it is refreshing to see Apple continue to innovate and raise the bar across the smartphone galaxy.