iPhone 5c vs. iPhone 5: A worthy ‘upgrade’ from Apple?

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Apple unveiled the iPhone 5c and the iPhone 5s on Tuesday. Usually, Apple reduces the price of its previous year flagship, and continues to sell it.

However, this year it made an exception and discontinued the iPhone 5, which it had unveiled in 2012. To fill the gap, it introduced a brand new iPhone, the iPhone 5c that sports a polycarbonate casing which comes in five new colours, Green, Blue, Yellow, Red and White.

The iPhone 5c is heavier at 132 grams, while the iPhone 5 weighs just 112 grams. The dimensions of the iPhone 5c are also larger at 124.4×59.2×8.97mm compared to the dimensions of the iPhone 5 which measured 123.8×58.6×7.6mm. So, the iPhone 5c is thicker and heavier. In terms of internals, the iPhone 5c is very similar to the iPhone 5, running the same A6 chip and featuring the same 4-inch Retina display with a resolution of 640×1136 pixels at 326ppi pixel density.

So, what’s really different in the iPhone 5c apart from the hard-coated the polycarbonate casing which replaces the iPhone 5’s aluminium shell? Well, for starters it supports more 4G network bands. A model of the iPhone 5c even supports the Indian TD-LTE Band 40 which is used by operators like Airtel for offering 4G services in the country. The iPhone 5 did not support these additional bands.

Another difference is that the iPhone 5c won’t offer a 64GB storage variant (just 16GB and 32GB variants), unlike the iPhone 5, making the additional storage a premium feature that users can only get with the iPhone 5s.

The iPhone 5c sports the same 8-megapixel rear camera and 1.2-megapixel front-facing FaceTime HD camera that’s seen on the iPhone 5. However, the iPhone 5c’s camera has been slightly improved as it has an f/2.4 aperture, backside illumination sensor, a hybrid IR filter and the ability to zoom-in while recording videos. Even the front camera on the iPhone 5c has a backside illumination sensor for taking low-light pictures. Of course, the iPhone 5 will also get some new camera features such as live filters and a square photo mode with the iOS 7 update. These features come out-of-the-box with the iPhone 5c.

The iPhone 5c also claims to offer better battery life with up to 10 hours talk time on 3G and up to 250 hours standby time. In contrast, the iPhone 5 claims to deliver up to 8 hours talk time on 3G and up to 225 hours standby time.

Looking at these differences, and leaving the externals aside, we can clearly see the iPhone 5c is a very minor upgrade compared to the iPhone 5. Those iPhone 5 users reluctant to invest in the flagship iPhone 5s should seriously consider if the differences between the iPhone 5 and 5c matter sufficiently to them before jumping the gun.


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