11 September 2013 | Team Tamar

Apple “Special Event” Recap: iPhone 5C and 5S

keynote-130910

Colourful handsets, faster processors, improved cameras and fingerprint scanners…

Last quarter, it was revealed that Apple’s share of the smartphone market was at its lowest since 2010. So, after months of speculation surrounding 2 new iPhones (5C and 5S), yesterday was Apple’s chance to prove to the world that the Cupertino-based company had what it took to remain competitive and moreover, underline their position as innovative market leaders.

But on their grandest stage… Apple choked, again.

iPhone 5C (Pre-order from 13th September):

  • 4-inch Retina display.
  • A6 processor – same as the iPhone 5.
  • The battery is slightly larger than it was on the iPhone 5.
  • It has the same 8-megapixel rear camera and a new FaceTime HD camera.
  • It supports ‘more LTE bands than any other smartphone in the world.’
  • Dual-band Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 4.0
  • The handset will cost £469 for 16GB and £549 for 32GB when bought outright.
  • Contract prices may be lower.

Spec for spec, the iPhone 5C is essentially an iPhone 5; same 4-inch display, same A6 processor and same 8-megapixel rear camera. The only noticeable differentiator is that the iPhone 5C is made of polycarbonate plastic, which comes in pink, green, white, blue and yellow.

While the iPhone 5C undercuts its discontinued predecessor on pricing (starts at £469), the “C” does not stand for cheap (it’s not cheap, as many believed it would be), but instead “colourful”.

Nothing revolutionary here…

iPhone 5S (Orders beginning September 20th):

  • The handset comes in three colours: gold, silver and slate.
  • A7 chip is twice as fast as the iPhone 5.
  • Built-in fingerprint scanner and Touch ID feature unlocks the phone and can be used to purchase apps.
  • Dual-flash LED camera with 28-megapixel panoramic photos.
  • The iPhone 5S has 10 hours of talk time and 250 hours of standby.
  • The 16GB handset will cost £549 up to £709 for 64GB.
  • Contract prices may be lower.

Source

There’s no denying that the iPhone 5S is a significant upgrade from its predecessor. But that’s all it is – a faster upgrade, with an improved camera and fingerprint scanner.

Dubbed “Touch ID”, the iPhone 5S’ fingerprint scanner now allows owners to access their handset at the touch of a button – literally! No more tedious passcodes. What is handy, is that iTunes/App Store purchases can be made without entering Apple ID details – just scan your fingerprint and you’re in.

While the megapixels remain unchanged, the iPhone 5S’ camera has a larger sensor, larger pixels (1.5µ pixels) and a larger aperture (f/2.2). In addition, the 5S’ camera is accompanied by a dual “True Tone” flash. All of this combined, essentially results in a better picture quality.

Again, nothing revolutionary…

To conclude…

Once again, Apple have done very little to reassure both its fan base and investors that the iPhone is the “smartphone of choice” – especially in a post-Jobs era.

While the 5C and 5S are improved iterations, they bring nothing new to what is becoming a very competitive table. Sure, a fingerprint scanner is a cool addition, but whether it’s enough to sway “in limbo” consumers remains uncertain.

All in all, yesterday’s event was underwhelming to say the least.

Team Tamar