SAN FRANCISCO – With the launch of the new iPhone approaching, photo of leaked parts suggest that Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) is planning to distinguish between the flagship iPhone 5S and the lower-priced 5C. However, rumors are that the phone will be more similar than dissimilar.
There will be some differences, including better battery performance and a fingerprint scanner on the 5S. In addition, the 5C will most likely have the A6 processor while the 5S will receive the newer, faster A7 processor. The A7 is reported to be 30 percent faster than the A6, and will give the 5S a leg up on top of the line Android phones from Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) and Samsung (KS:005930).
So, why will Apple release two models? Price would be the most likely answer. For years, carriers in the U.S. have offered the iPhone at $ 0, $ 99, and $ 199 depending on the contract and configuration. The 5C will be the mostly likely candidate for the $ 0 iPhone, but that does not answer what will happen to iPhone 4S and 5 inventory – possible an inventory swap, where Apple to send these older models to countries where the 5C and 5S have not yet been released?
While the phone might be almost the same, rumors of the impending release have helped to build excitement in the iPhone. According to Eric Mack at CNET, lines have begun to form at Apple Stores around the country. AppleInsider reported that as of Friday afternoon, four people could already be seen camping out outside New York’s Fifth Avenue Apple Store ‘in line’ for a new iPhone that has yet to be officially announced. The release date is September 20.
However, it is too early to tell if the new iPhones will help Apple’s stock to regain some of its luster. Shares of Apple closed Friday at $ 498.22 well off its 52-week high of $ 702.10. While Apple’s share price is down almost 27 percent in the past 52-week, shares of Google, the company’s main competitor in the smartphone war, are up more than 24 percent in the same period, and the share price is closing in on $ 900. Ultimately, Apple needs the launch of the iPhone 5C and 5S to be a success as sluggish sales would influence confidence on CEO Tim Cook to lead the company in the post-Steve Jobs era.
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