Share This Page

Apple rolling out 2 iPhone options

| Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2013, 7:15 p.m.

CUPERTINO, Calif. — For the first time since introducing the device that changed cellphones forever, Apple will offer two versions of the latest iPhones — a cheaper one made of plastic and another that aims to be “the gold standard of smartphones” and reads your fingerprint.

Apple showed off the latest iPhone models, available on Sept. 20, during an event at its Cupertino headquarters. The company is trying to fend off Samsung and other competitors that want to challenge Apple in the competitive smartphone market. The lower-cost iPhone 5C is expected to help boost sales in China and other areas where people don't have as much money to spend on new gadgets as they do in the United States and Europe.

Research firm Gartner Inc. estimates that Apple had a 14.4 percent share of the world's smartphone market in the second quarter of this year, No. 2 behind Samsung's 31.7 percent.

The lower-cost iPhone 5C will be available in five colors — green, blue, yellow, pink and white. CEO Tim Cook calls it “more fun and colorful” than any other iPhone. The 5C has a 4-inch Retina display and is powered by Apple's A6 chip. It has an 8 megapixel camera, live photo filters and a rear cover that lights up.

The iPhone 5C will cost $99 for a 16 gigabyte model and $199 for a 32 gigabyte model with a two-year wireless contract.

Jefferies analyst Peter Misek called the phones “lovely,” but said in a note to investors that the $99 minimum price for the 5C “is higher than expected and still leaves Apple with a product gap in the low-end.”

Without a contract, the 5C costs $549 and $649 depending on memory size.

The second phone, the 5S, is “the most forward-looking phone we have ever created,” said Phil Schiller, senior vice president of worldwide marketing at Apple. It will come in silver, gold and “space gray” and run a new chip, the A7, which is up to twice as fast as the A6.

Schiller said the phone can run more health and fitness applications. These apps have become increasingly popular as more people use them to track exercise routines, calorie intake and sleep patterns.

The camera in the 5S received some major upgrades, including several automatic features designed to produce better photos. It has a larger pixel count and a larger aperture, which helps capture more light. The phone has a “true-tone” flash feature that is designed not to clash with the colors in the room or a person's skin color — something Schiller said has not been done on a phone before.

The camera, called iSight, has “auto image stabilization,” which helps avoid blurry pictures, and a slow-motion camera for video. A “burst mode” can take 10 frames per second as long as you hold your finger on the shutter, then find the best one in your camera roll.

The 5S includes “Touch ID,” which reads fingerprints at a “detailed level,” Schiller said. He said it is “fun and easy” to teach the 5S about your fingerprint and once you do, you can touch the home button to unlock the phone. The company said fingerprints will not be stored on its servers.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.