Apple formally reveals iPhone 5C

iPhone 5C launch

iPhone 5C launch

As expected, Apple has lifted the curtains off its latest hardware fare: a pair of new iPhones, including the entry-level “iPhone 5C” with its five color variations and $99 starting retail price (on contract). Having a cheaper version of the iPhone is Apple’s attempt to make its iconic handset accessible to developing countries.

The launch of the iPhone 5C and its pricier cousin, the iPhone 5S, were held at Apple’s headquarters in Cupertino, California.

Reactions about the iPhone 5C have been generally positive, although a number of investors are wary that not only the most valuable tech company risk reduced margins, a cheaper version of the iPhone may tarnish the iconic brand that has long been associated to premium users since it first appeared in 2007.

iPhone 5C launch

But it seems Apple is determined to expand the iPhone brand to emerging markets, even if it means frustrating some of its longtime users for coming up with a rather pedestrian smartphone. The company’s share price has suffered a 29-percent fall since it hit a record high of $702.10 last year, mainly fueled by investor fears of slowing growth and a perception that Apple has stopped innovating.

Add to that its losing battle against Samsung and Huawei in India and China, as rival companies offer more affordable yet reliable Android-based smartphones.

The iPhone 5C features a plastic casing that is available in five colors: bright blue, red, yellow, white, and lime green. It sports a 4-inch Retina display, a front-facing camera, as well as the 8-megapixel rear camera and A6 processor seen in the iPhone 5.

The entry-level iPhone 5C will cost $99 for the 16GB model, while the 32GB version will cost $199. Pre-order begins September 13, and will land in Apple stores on September 20.

Source: Reuters

Image source: REUTERS/ Stephen Lam

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