iPhone 5C Officially Announced: $99, Launches September 13


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For months now, the normal late summer iPhone rumors have been swirling. Rather than just leaks about the newest iPhone, Apple fans have been greeted with rumors about two new iPhones. One is the iPhone 5S, of course, but the other is a less expensive, entry-level handset. Today at Apple's big fall iPhone event the rumors of the iPhone 5C proved to be true.

Apple's Phil Schiller took the stage early in the presentation to officially unveil the iPhone 5C. The device is made using mostly the hardware found in the iPhone 5, but now comes in a variety of colors. The device has a single piece of hard-coated polycarbonate plastic that makes up its back and sides. The smartphone will come in bright colors of green, white, blue, pink, or yellow.

Inside the device the plastic cover is lined with a steel frame on the inside that acts as an antenna. The 5C has a 4-inch display, an A6 processor, and an 8MP rear camera - the same as last year's iPhone 5. What's new is that the 5C has a slightly larger capacity battery and a slightly better front-facing camera.

The colors are a large selling point for the iPhone 5C, but Apple is giving customers even more choices than just the five colors the device comes in. Apple will be selling custom silicon rubber cases in a variety of colors for $29 each. The cases, bizarrely, have a 5 x 7 grid of holes on the back, so that the original color of the device can be seen and an eye-numbing variety of color combinations can be made.

The iPhone 5C will come in two varieties, a version with 16GB of storage for $99 (with two-year contract) and a version with 32GB of storage for $199 (with contract).

The iPhone 5C will launch in the U.S. alongside the iPhone 5S on September 20. Pre-orders for the device begin on September 13.