People check out several versions of the new iPhone 5C.
Apple has simultaneously released two new iPhones for the
first time in its history as the company responds to an
increasingly competitive global handset market.
At an event at Apple's California headquarters this
morning[image, CEO Tim Cook unveiled an updated version of
the iPhone 5 - called the 5S - and an unprecedented budget
model - the 5C.
Both were widely anticipated by industry pundits following
numerous leaks of parts and marketing material in recent
As expected, the 5S looks almost identical to the iPhone 5.
The most notable innovations are a fingerprint-reading
security sensor built into the home button and a 64-bit
processing chip, meaning it works faster. Both are firsts in
It is also the first iPhone to come in a 'champagne' colour
in addition to the customary black and white, and Apple have
boosted the camera, flash and battery slightly.
The 5C, by contrast, signals a shift in Apple's smartphone
strategy. It is essentially an iPhone 5 with a plastic shell,
available in several colours - including blue, pink, yellow,
white, and green.
But, crucially, at a knock-down price.
In the US, the 16GB version will cost $US99 ($A108) and the
32GB version $US199 with a two-year plan, but no other
pricing information has been released.
It is seen as Apple's attempt to break into emerging markets
like China, where higher-range models are too expensive for
Apple's failure to entice buyers in emerging markets is one
reason the company now trails Korean giant Samsung in global
Apple has traditionally sought to capture emerging markets
with older iPhone models, which become cheaper when new
models are released.
But that approach has failed, said Foad Fadaghi, an analyst
at technology research firm Telsyte.
The older phones are viewed as inferior and second-hand. The
5C is all about "being relevant in China".
The new phones are indicative of a shift in Apple's strategy
in the post-Steve Jobs era away from dazzling innovations and
towards selling more products to more people, Fadaghi said.
"This is very much indicative of a new Apple that is focused
on not losing out in markets, and returning value to its
shareholders over and above innovating."
He doubted the 5C would have much impact in Australia,
because phones are generally included in plans for free.
If anything, it may appeal to pre-paid customers who are
after a cheaper phone, he said.
Apple have said that iPhone 5C pre-orders start on September
13. iPhone 5C and 5S will go on sale a week later in
Australia, the US, Canada, China, France, Germany, Japan,
Singapore and the UK.
The company also says its next mobile operating system, iOS
7, will be available as a free download on September 18.
Craig Federighi, head of software at Apple, said at the same
event that "downloading iOS 7 is like getting an all new
The new system can be downloaded on the iPhone 4 and later
models, as well as on tablets beginning with the iPad 2.