Apple is rumored to be delivering not one, but two new iPhones in 2013 with the iPhone 5S and a device currently dubbed iPhone 5C supposedly on tap for later this year. And while much focus has been placed on the iPhone 5S, the iPhone 5′s likely successor, there is quite a bit of interest in the iPhone 5C, a device that has been rumored to be replacing the iPhone 4S.
Last year, Apple followed protocol. In September, the company announced a new numbered variant of the iPhone, the iPhone 5, which brought a host of improvements along with it including a redesign, 4G LTE data speeds, and a larger screen, all different from the previous ‘S’ model, 2011′s iPhone 4S.
At the time, the company dropped the price of the iPhone 4S to $ 99, where it stands today, and began offering the iPhone 4, the company 2010 iPhone, for free. Until September, this is how Apple’s lineup should look. A premium iPhone 5 starting at $ 199.99, an iPhone 4S for $ 99 and an iPhone 4 that takes on the budget Android phones out there.
This year, Apple may not follow the same route. Indeed, rumors suggest that the iPhone 5 will be replaced by an ‘S’ iPhone, the iPhone 5S, which is expected to retain the design and screen size of last year’s model while adding a new camera and improved processor. But the company is also expected to announce another iPhone later this year, a device that is being dubbed the iPhone 5C.
For months, rumors have waged on about a cheaper iPhone, one that would be aimed at low-cost Android phones and consumers in emerging markets like China. As it turns out, the iPhone 5C, Apple’s cheaper iPhone, appears to be very real and it’s looking like it could be launched alongside the iPhone 5S later on this year.
Here now, is everything we know about Apple’s rumored iPhone 5C, including whispers about its release date, hardware, software and more.
Apple is all but confirmed to be hosting an iPhone related event on September 10th. The event, which was specifically mentioned as an iPhone 5S launch event, might actually be the launch date for the upcoming iPhone 5C as well.
There is, however, no guarantee that the iPhone 5C will show up. We’ve seen analysts like Piper Jaffray’s Gene Munster claim that the iPhone 5C is on the way but the original AllThingsD report that cited September 10th as the iPhone 5S launch date didn’t specify if we’ll see both an iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C, only that the iPhone 5S is on the way.
John Gruber from Daring Fireball believes that if Apple does announce an iPhone 5C, that it will replace the iPhone 4S and the iPhone 4, shifting away from the norm. If Gruber is on point, then it could be that the iPhone 5C makes its debut in more regions than just developing ones which could mean a release date right around the same time as the iPhone 5S.
Apple typically releases its new iPhone models just a few short weeks after launching them which should put the iPhone 5S and perhaps the iPhone 5C release date right into the thick of September. Rumors have however put the iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C release date in late October but those have not been backed up.
If Apple does launch an iPhone 5C, it’s almost assuredly going to be made from plastic, rather than the aluminum that Apple used to build the iPhone 5 and likely, the iPhone 5S.
All along, rumors have suggested a plastic form factor for the iPhone 5C and recently, we’ve seen either the iPhone 5C itself, or mock ups of the device, appear in photos and on video showcasing what appears to be a plastic back plate.
Many of the photos came from Sonny Dickson, a known Apple leaker, who also released a video showing off what the iPhone 5C could look like next to the iPhone 5 and iPhone 5S. The photos depict a slim device, almost as slim as the 7.1mm iPhone 5, with style that is clearly borrowed from the premium iPhone model.
Japanese site Macotakara also published a video of the iPhone 5C’s plastic back which clearly show that this device is going to use the same Lightning dock standard as Apple’s other devices. We’ve also seen mock ups from tinhte.vn user sonlazio that depict exactly the same thing.
There is also speculation that the device will come in several different colors, offering users the ability to sport a non-black or white iPhone without the use of a case.