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  • Gadgets, News - Written by on Wednesday, September 11, 2013 8:59 - 17 Comments

    iPhone 5S and 5C hit Australia 20 Sept


    news Iconic technology giant Apple this morning announced that its new iPhone 5S and 5C models would be available in Australia from the company’s own stores and through every major mobile carrier from Friday 20 September, the same date they will be available in other major countries such as the US and UK.

    The company unveiled the two new models overnight at an event in the US. The iPhone 5S is seen as being the primary replacement for the company’s flagship iPhone 5 model. Its main refinements include a fingerprint sensor integrated into the device’s home button, a new processor based on a 64-bit chip, a new side processor which captures data from the phone’s accelerometer, gyroscope and compass for greater power efficiency, and an improved camera and better flash.

    Whereas the previous iPhone 5 model was available in a dark gray/black colour, in addition to white, the new iPhone 5S will also be available in a gold colour.

    “Phone 5s comes in gold, silver or space gray, and will be available in Australia for a recommended retail price of RRP $869 inc GST for the 16GB model and RRP $999 inc GST for the 32GB model and RRP $1,129 inc GST for the 64GB model,” Apple said in a statement released this morning. “iPhone 5s will be available from the Apple Online Store (www.apple.com/au), Apple’s retail stores, and through Telstra, Optus, Vodafone and select Apple Authorised Resellers. iPhone 5s cases will be available in beige, black, blue, brown, yellow and (RED) for a recommended retail price of RRP A$48 inc GST through the Apple Online Store (www.apple.com/au), Apple’s retail stores and select Authorised Apple Resellers.”

    “iPhone 5s is the most forward-thinking smartphone in the world, delivering desktop class architecture in the palm of your hand,” said Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of worldwide marketing. “iPhone 5s sets a new standard for smartphones, packed into its beautiful and refined design are breakthrough features that really matter to people, like Touch ID, a simple and secure way to unlock your phone with just a touch of your finger.”

    Apple has also launched a new iPhone line, the iPhone 5C, which has a different case model compared with the existing iPhone 5 and new iPhone 5S models. Whereas those models come with an aluminium casing, the iPhone 5C’s design is based on a similar kind of light and colourful polycarbonate casing as is found in Nokia’s Lumia models. The iPhone 5C will come in blue, green, pink, yellow and white.

    The iPhone 5C’s featureset appears to be similar to that of the previous-generation iPhone 5, and Apple has also designed a number of “soft, matte, micro-fibre-lined cases” in different colours that have holes in the back to let some of the iPhone 5C’s colours through.

    An Apple statement this morning said: “iPhone 5c comes in blue, green, pink, yellow and white and will be available in Australia for a recommended retail price of RRP $739 inc GST for the 16GB model and RRP $869 inc GST for the 32GB model. iPhone 5c will be available from the Apple Online Store (www.apple.com/au), Apple’s retail stores, and through Telstra, Optus, Vodafone and select Apple Authorised Resellers. iPhone 5c cases will be available in blue, green, pink, yellow, black and white for a recommended retail price of RRP A$39 inc GST through the Apple Online Store (www.apple.com/au), Apple’s retail stores and select Apple Authorised Resellers.”

    “iPhone 5c is everything iPhone 5 was and more, in an all-new design packed with great features,” said Apple’s Schiller. “iPhone 5c is designed with a beautiful polycarbonate enclosure that looks and feels so solid in your hand.” Apple also announced that it would make a new iPhone 4S 8GB model available for RRP A$529 including GST.

    The new iPhone models will also run the version 7 of Apple’s iOS mobile operating system. The platform will also be available as a free software upgrade for most iPhones and iPads from two days before the iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C launch, on 18 September. “iOS 7 will be available as a free software update starting on Wednesday 18 September for iPhone 4 and later, iPad 2 and later, iPad mini and iPod touch (fifth generation). Some features may not be available on all products,” Apple said.

    I think Apple’s done what pretty much everyone expected here, and what the cadre of analysts and journalists covering the company obsessively had predicted it would do. Some minor improvements to the already solid iPhone 5, and a new mid-range iPhone based on the iPhone 5 but in new colours and with a light polycarbonate casing.

    If you’re an iPhone user and want to stay with the platform, you probably don’t want to bother upgrading if you already have an iPhone 5. However, if you have an iPhone 4, 4S, or something prior to that (3GS, for example), this is your upgrade. If you want the high-end and to stay future-proof as long as possible (or if you just like gold), go for the iPhone 5S. Otherwise, if you want a bit more colour, go for the iPhone 5C. We would, however, point out that there are already plenty of very colourful cases that would make an iPhone 5S look very much like an iPhone 5C: A favourite case for our household iPhone 5 is hot pink.

    Will the fingerprint sensor turn out to be a big deal? Definitely, in the long-term, we would expect most smartphones to incorporate this kind of technology, and we can see it being used for mobile transactions. However, right now, as with other features such as NFC chips, it’s more of a nice to have, rather than a necessity.

    If you’re an Android user and already have a fairly modern handset (say, something from the Galaxy S III up, there probably isn’t a whole lot of reason to consider switching back to the Appleverse for anything the company announced this morning. Personally, I own an iPhone 5 and a Nexus 4. I tend to use the Nexus 4 a lot more, however. Although it doesn’t have 4G speeds and is a bit banged up from a few adventures, I just love the form factor and the default ‘Nexus’ stock Android experience.

    Image credit: Apple

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    1. PeterA
      Posted 11/09/2013 at 9:24 am | Permalink | Reply

      I don’t see the finger print scanner being a big selling point, or a useful feature.
      It will be like finger print readers on laptops, completely unused.
      Or like NFC devices on mobile phones, used so rarely not having it is a non issue.

      Sensor-companion core seems like a great idea, will let you use those sensors without melting your phone in your pocket, or draining your battery. Developers WANT to be able to use these sensors (fitness apps?) but just can’t due to the power constraints.

      The RRP’s are scary, and I’ll be amazed if they have a similar RRP in China, but that’s what we expect in Australia.

      • HazchemD
        Posted 11/09/2013 at 10:07 am | Permalink | Reply

        RRP is the same is USD as last year, local difference seem to be down to a different exchange rate

        Sensor could be awesome, if it works well. I’ll wait until I try to before deciding on it’s usefulness

        Agree that the Sensor-companion core is a great idea

        • Ned Kelly
          Posted 12/09/2013 at 4:07 pm | Permalink | Reply

          If you could buy a Iphone 5S from the US apple store (http://store.apple.com/us/buy-iphone/iphone5s). A unlocked Iphone 5S with out a contract is $849US for the 64GB Phone, and on current exchange rate the Australian price is $917.15. but both these prices are from the apple store so you would assume that they would have build the profit into the price.
          But one would hope that this would work in Australia, but you have to check http://www.apple.com/iphone/LTE/

      • TrevorX
        Posted 11/09/2013 at 10:50 am | Permalink | Reply

        The problem with NFC in phones is down to the lack of support from banking platforms. NFC in a phone is utterly brilliant – I currently use ‘tap to pay’ on my CC whenever possible because it is by far the fastest and most convenient payment method. As soon as this can be reliably and consistently done by my phone with my bank I will be able to leave my wallet at home for most things, just taking my phone and a $50 note in my pocket for emergencies. Brilliant. If only it could start my car too…

        As for fingerprint reading, as long as phone manufacturers can make it both simple to set up and reliable I see it as a ‘must have’ feature for some people. Right now you can have swipe to unlock  (zero security) or a pin, password or pattern, all of which are extremely inconvenient. Facial recognition is effectively useless as it can be defeated by a photo.

        Fingerprint recognition, on the other hand, can provide a reasonably secure experience with the convenience of a single swipe to unlock. It will have to respond quickly and reliably to be useful, but if they have nailed that then I see it as a feature many will appreciate.

      • Paul Wilkinson
        Posted 11/09/2013 at 5:41 pm | Permalink | Reply

        On the contrary, I think that the fingerprint reader will be a big selling point in corporate/enterprise. My phone is managed by our corporate MDM – it has a mandatory passcode that changes every 45 days and the phone locks after 5 minutes. I enter my passcode dozens of times a day and have to remember to use the new code when it changes.

        With TouchID I will be able to unlock my phone more quickly and as it is integrated with the data protection hardware in the iPhone it makes your data secure.

    2. stoffs
      Posted 11/09/2013 at 9:45 am | Permalink | Reply

      i remember all the apple fans knocking the HTC and Nokia windows phones that were “coloured” ..

      Good to see apple innovating on the colour front… /smirk

      Glad to have left apple.. i’m sure there will be plenty of sheep lined up to get the new one – even though their current one works fine.

    3. stoffs
      Posted 11/09/2013 at 9:47 am | Permalink | Reply

      oh… and am i the only person who thinks that apple IOS looks almost exactly like Windows 3.1 ?

      Those pics of the coloured ones with matching coloured theme on the screen…. look like toys for kinder kids.

      • Brendan
        Posted 11/09/2013 at 10:09 am | Permalink | Reply

        Not really. There are still a lot of differences.

        Having said that, there are only so many haptics designs that work; it’s natural progression that Android and Apple are ending up in a similar place.

        What I find hilarious is the colour comment from another phone company that’s jyst been snapped up by Microsoft.

        Frankly the phone itself is just iteration – that’s okay though because Android phones are also basically just iteration around a similar theme. IOS 6 has some nice usability changes, though.

        Either way – people will find what works. Which is cool. I just don’t get the Anti-Android or Anti-Apple bile; we need folks like Google and Apple and (even) Microsoft to push each other around; it helps keeps innovation occurring.

        Choice is good.

        • HazchemD
          Posted 11/09/2013 at 10:11 am | Permalink | Reply

          +1 choice is great!

        • stoffs
          Posted 11/09/2013 at 10:40 am | Permalink | Reply


          even when i was an iphone user … always struck me that it didn’t look all that diff to 3.1

          • Brendan
            Posted 11/09/2013 at 11:00 am | Permalink | Reply

            Look, not to rain on that whole windows 3.1 joke thing, you know Steve and Bill worked together for some time, before an acrimonious split, right?

            Windows owes as much of it’s initial UI to Apple, as vice versa. Then again, there are strong similarities between windows and early OS/2 which, oh wait, was a Microsoft and IBM thing, that had an acrimonious split.

            Like I said, there are naturally more efficient haptic (and indeed that can extend to graphical) designs; that some UIs look like others says more about how we think and work, and less really about who did what first.

            • Stephen
              Posted 11/09/2013 at 3:50 pm | Permalink | Reply

              When was that?

              Steve worked with Woz. Bill G with Paul Allen and others. Their companies had a few mutual projects but at no time could they be described as ‘working together’.

              And neither Steve nor Bill ever designed an interface, just okayed other peoples designs as part of OS builds.

    4. asphalt
      Posted 11/09/2013 at 10:05 am | Permalink | Reply

      yup, nothing appealing and yeah, the colours and OS, really more of a copy of what phones are out there now. More excited about the Nokia Lumia 1020. Although, as stoffs said, only the fanboys will go crazy over anything with an apple logo.

      • stoffs
        Posted 12/09/2013 at 8:54 am | Permalink | Reply

        If i didn’t have a 920 , would be looking at getting the 1020..

        however – i have seen nokia is bringing out a lumia the size of a galaxy note , very tempted (really want the bigger screen).

    5. Alex
      Posted 12/09/2013 at 8:17 am | Permalink | Reply

      Somehow I managed to read a bit about the new models without seeing the prices, and while not very interested by the 5s specs I thought the 5c looked quite nice. Then I saw the 5c pricing and literally laughed out loud.

      There’s a raft of fantastic Android phones for under $500 offering similar or better performance to the 5c in excellent quality packages (great screens, solid builds, great cameras, 4G support etc). I’m on a Nexus 4 which is superb and only lacks 4G support… you can pick one up for about $350.

      I know the 5c will sell because it’s Apple, but I’ll shake my head in disbelief at the price every time I see someone carrying one.

    6. Dave
      Posted 12/09/2013 at 7:24 pm | Permalink | Reply

      For the life of me I still don’t understand why people using phones with Android software clog up the comment sections of Apple articles(from here to the Guardian). Apart maybe from getting stuff off their chest I don’t see much benefit. Once upon a time there used to be some interesting to and froing but those days are gone. Now it’s just relentless sheeple jibes or some such. And they say Apple fans are obsessed. You won’t find me boring your pants off under Android articles.

    7. stoffs
      Posted 13/09/2013 at 11:10 am | Permalink | Reply

      it’s called payback… for all the years the iphone users paid out on android..

      is this one of the 1st times a new iphone has been announced and apple’s share price didn’t sky rocket?

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