As many tech industry analysts have already stated, Apple needs to make up some ground on its Android competitors. Samsung is currently leading the smartphone market by a large margin, due in no small part to the release of new hardware at a time when the iPhone 5 is almost a year old. But as is the case year after year, Apple will likely announce an iPhone 5 successor this fall, and there's little doubt the device will be dubbed the iPhone 5S.
But what can we expect from the next iPhone? And even more interestingly, what's the deal with the rumored cheaper, plastic-cased iPhone 5C? Here's a rundown of everything we think we know about Apple's upcoming smartphone lineup.
What's in a name? Well, in regards to smartphones, Apple has historically kept things fairly simple. Like its predecessors, the next iteration of iPhone will most likely add on the "S" moniker. Granted, there's always the possibility Apple could break with convention and go directly to the iPhone 6. And let's not forget when Cupertino dropped the numbers all together for the iPad. But for all intents and purposes, the iPhone 5S will be Apple's next handset.
Despite a seemingly never-ending deluge of leaked images, there's no solid confirmation Apple is planning to reveal a low-cost iPhone. CEO Tim Cook has previously dismissed the idea, but it's difficult to look away from the mounting evidence of a plastic iPhone, allegedly called the iPhone 5C. The "C" stands for color, as the smartphone will purportedly be available in a wide array of hues. Well, or it stands for "cheap," according to whom you're speaking.
According to KGI analyst Mingchi Kuo (via 9to5Mac), Apple will make some expected upgrades to the iPhone 5S internals, but with a few notable changes from the iPhone 5. After supposedly cutting ties with Samsung over processors, the new A7 will reportedly appear in the iPhone 5S. And while Kuo expects a 20 percent increase in efficiency from the A7's ARMv8-based LPDDR3 RAM chip, he thinks the memory is still set at 1GB. The A7 may be a 64-bit processor.
Meanwhile, the iPhone 5C is expected to still use the A6 processor, but the differences to the iPhone 5S internals are surprisingly minimal. Both models are expected to contain a larger 1600 mAh battery, an 8 MP rear-facing camera (same as the iPhone 5), and a 326 PPI display. But rumors suggest the iPhone 5S may add an expanded 2.0 aperture, in comparison to the 2.4 aperture of the iPhone 5C camera.
Both the iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C are expected to launch with the redesigned iOS 7, although some rumors have suggested the iPhone 5C may not include Siri support in an attempt to differentiate the price between the two tiers. The iPhone 5S will reportedly offer storage options up to 128GB, doubling that of the 64GB iPhone 5.
The most notable differences between the iPhone 5S and the iPhone 5C are probably relegated to each model's exterior hardware and case. While the iPhone 5S will stick with the aluminum back casing found on the iPhone 5, the cheaper iPhone 5C will utilize a thicker, curvier, plastic back plate. As previously mentioned, the iPhone 5C will supposedly be available in six different colors, similar to the array of options introduced with the fifth-gen iPod Touch.
But the iPhone 5S will reportedly break away from the black and silver finishes of the iPhone 5. According to recent rumors, Apple is planning to release the iPhone 5S with the option of a faux gold back plate. While the leaked images look a bit gaudy, they're also fairly convincing. Additionally, the iPhone 5S will likely include a convex, sapphire glass home button capable of reading your fingerprint. Lastly, the iPhone 5S may include a dual-LED flash, capable of taking better low-light photos.
Apparently, the introduction of the iPhone 5C could mean the death of the iPhone 5 model. Generally, when Apple releases a new iPhone, the previous two models--in this case, iPhone 5 and iPhone 4S--receive a price reduction. Historically, the iPhone 5 should drop to about $100, and the iPhone 4S go free, with the acceptance of a 2-year contract after the release of iPhone 5S.
According to Kuo, Apple will actually eliminate the iPhone 5 altogether and replace it with the new iPhone 5C. Strangely, Kuo still seems to think the iPhone 4S will remain in the equation; an odd decision since the iPhone 4S features a smaller display and an outdated 30-pin connector.
As stated above, Apple has historically used a fairly standard pricing structure for iPhone releases in recent years. The iPhone 5S is expected to start at $199 with a two-year carrier contract. If Apple releases an unlocked version (which they most likely will) the price is expected to be somewhere around $600 to $700. The iPhone 5C, on the other hand, is a bit of a mystery. If Apple truly replaces the iPhone 5 with its plastic-backed alternative, history would place the on-contract price at $100. Some analysts have claimed an unlocked version of the iPhone 5S should be around $400.
The current rumor suggests Apple will reveal the iPhone 5S and the iPhone 5C (and maybe some new iPads) during an event on September 10. If Cupertino follows the iPhone 5 launch schedule, the new iPhones could be available before the end of September, but in any case, we should see them released in the fall.
Source : ign[dot]com