Apple reveals iPhone 5S and 5C, iOS7 release date

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The iPhone 5S will come in 3 colors: Slate, Gold, and Silver. (AP Photo/ Marcio Jose Sanchez)

Apple CEO Tim Cook took the stage in a black shirt and jeans at the company’s Cupertino, Calif. headquarters on Tuesday to show off the latest technology from the company, including new lower-cost 5C models and a fancy new golden iPhone 5S that may be the most important product yet for the technology pioneer.

Cook began the day by discussing iOS 7, an update to the software that powers the iPhone and iPad. The new version does away with the 3D effect seen in earlier versions and introduces a simpler new visual style. The new software will be released Sept. 18 for the iPhone 4 and later, iPad 2 and later, iPad mini and 5th-generation iPod touch.

But it’s Apple’s much-anticipated new iPhone line-up that fans were most eager for.

“Now I’d like to talk about iPhone. A couple of you may be expecting this,” Cook joked to the crowd. In the past, the company has lowered the price on older models when it introduced new ones. This year, the company is instead releasing two new models: a low-cost iPhone 5C and a high-end iPhone 5S — and yes, it comes in gold.

“A few of you might have seen some shots on the web. And that’s cool, because everyone is really excited about this,” explained Phil Schiller, senior vice president of marketing.

The iPhone 5S is made of aluminum and comes in silver, gold and slate gray, and it includes a fingerprint sensor for security– a new feature Apple calls the Touch ID sensor. The sensor is built into the home button on the bottom of the smartphone.

“You can simply touch your home button to unlock your phone,” Schiller explained.

The phone is powered by a new chip called the A7 that Schiller called the first ever 64-bit smartphone chip. It packs in over a billion transistors, Schiller said, and is “over twice as fast” as earlier processors. Graphics are 56 times faster, he said.

The iPhone 5S also has an impressive-sounding camera on the new phone that includes an Apple-designed lens and image sensor system, as well as a special flash designed to improve color balance. Apple calls it “the iSight” camera.The 5Swill sell for $199 for a 16GB model, $299 for the 32GB version, and $399 for the top-end 64GB version; it will be available on Sept. 20 in the U.S. and eight other countries, including China.

Meanwhile, the iPhone 5C is a lower-cost plastic model wrapped in one of five colors: lime green, white, yellow, red and bright blue. It has a 4-inch Retina display, and the same 8-megapixel rear camera and A6 processor as the iPhone 5. But the new model has a front-facing camera as well; it will cost $99 for a 16GB model, and $199 for 32GB.

Senior vice president of marketing Phil Schiller shows off the colors of the new iPhone 5C (AP)

Apple took the wraps off the iPhone 5 last September. The company has never waited longer than a year to update the iPhone, which has generated $88 billion in revenue during the past year.

Apple’s timetable for rolling out products has vexed many investors who have watched the company’s growth slow and profit margins decrease. Meanwhile, a bevy of smartphone makers, most of whom rely on Google’s free Android software, release wave after wave of devices that cost less than the iPhone. Those concerns are reflected in Apple’s stock price, which has declined nearly 30 percent since peaking at $705.07 at about the same time the iPhone 5 went on sale last year. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index has risen about 14 percent during the same stretch.

Even though Apple’s market value of roughly $460 billion is more than any other company in the world, the deterioration in its stock price is escalating the pressure on CEO Tim Cook to prove he’s the right leader to carry on the legacy of co-founder Steve Jobs. Since Cook became CEO two years ago, Apple has only pushed out new versions of products developed under Jobs, raising questions about whether the company’s technological vision has become blurred under the new regime.

-Courtesy Fox News

What do you think of Apple’s recent announcements? What’s got you excited, and what are you not too happy about? Let’s hear it!

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3 comments

  1. Glen McKeown

    Interesting last comment. Apple have never “invented” anything. Rather they have taken existing concepts and raised them to a different and far better level, whether it be computer, phone or pad. So just what is this “technological vision” that is becoming blurred. It’s a cliche that doesn’t really stand up to analysis, but it does provide a negative feel.
    Re-inventing the wheel takes time, and there will be a number of false starts. Most products that Apple have created have proved to be desirable enough that not only do people want to buy them, but manufacturers want to copy them. A sign that they are still doing some things right – even without Saint Steve.

    • Cocoatech

      Glen, in terms of a new Apple product, one has not been released under Tim Cook, which is what that was referring to. Under Jobs, Apple released new products every couple of years.

      Now, it could be said that there really isn’t much new to release/innovate. Like you said, it has to be desirable, as most Apple products take a while in the works. Tim may have some things up his sleeve, but its an idea certainly worth entertaining.

      • Glen McKeown

        True there is a slow down, but it also true that there was a sudden speed up – some time after Steve Jobs returned. The trigger for the “explosion” was the success of the iPod. Prior to that Apple was pretty much a computer company, with the greatest level of innovation being coloured iMacs and OSX.
        In essence the latest outpouring has centred around the iPod and its variants, i.e. iPhone iTouch and iPad. Those developments were made possible by some hardware developments, like the Flash Card.
        At the moment hardware development is incremental, so other developments, like the phone are likewise incremental.
        If I were to criticise Apple for anything it is concentrating on new hardware, and ignoring the software, excepting the operating system. There are plenty of areas were their software is not professional e.g. printing from Mail or Contacts.
        having had Apple products since 1981 I can confess to being an Apple fan, but I do recognise that not all is “insanely great”, but I am concerned that the never ending pressure to innovate becomes the enemy that stops them ensuring that what they can do is top quality.
        I would suggest that what Apple is bought for is the quality and ease of operation of their products, not the innovation.
        Okay, I’m now fairly geriatric, but I find a lot of the facilities on products somewhat peripheral to their usage. I would prefer apple to concentrating on providing what is genuinely usable rather than vogue.
        And given the price of the new iPhones, a little less costly. I’m sticking with my 3GS

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