As expected, Apple unveiled a cheaper version of the iPhone along with a more advanced model with a fingerprint sensor during its Tuesday press conference.
The conference, held in Cupertino, Calif., focused on the new iPhone 5s -- which closely resembles the iPhone 5 but has the fingerprint sensor, new camera capabilities and a faster processor -- and the budget-priced, multi-hued iPhone 5c.
The iPhone 5s comes with Touch ID, a thin fingerprint sensor embedded in the home button. The sensor is detailed enough to detect 500 pixels per inch and can read a thumbprint pressed against it in any direction.
Touch ID can be used to wake the phone and make iTunes purchases, though Apple officials said the thumbprint data is stored only in the phone, not within iTunes or iCloud. The feature is optional, and traditional passwords and swipe-to-unlock are still supported.
The 5s is powered by the A7, a 64-bit chip that is approximately 50 times faster than the original iPhone. Donald Mustard, co-founder of Chair Games, said the chip is able to make the upcoming "Infinity Blade 3" four times as detailed as the original "Infinity Blade" game.
A new camera lens for the 5s has five elements, improved aperture and a 15 percent larger sensor area for better picture quality. In addition, a white and an amber flash can be combined in 1,000 different variations to adjust the color tone of the scene and improve the colors.
Finally, the 5s camera has better image stabilization and is capable of taking 10 pictures per second in burst mode, as well as 120 frames per second slow-motion video.
The phone retails under contract for $199 for the 16GB version, $299 for the 32GB version and $399 for the 64GB version, and it's available with black, silver or gold aluminum backing. It can be pre-ordered starting Sept. 20.
The iPhone 5c appears roughly similar to the now-discontinued iPhone 5, with a 4-inch display and an 8-megapixel camera. It will be available with blue, white, pink, yellow and green plastic backs and costs $99 for the 16GB version and $199 for the 32GB version.
The 5c can be pre-ordered Friday and purchased in stores Sept. 20. The iPhone 4s will still be sold and will be free with a cellular contract.
The new iPhones will come loaded with iOS 7, the latest revision to Apple's mobile operating system, which will be available for download Sept. 18. In addition to a graphical overhaul that emphasizes flatness, iOS 7 has a number of other tweaks and new features.
Chief among these is the Control Center, which combines a number of frequently-used features such as Wi-Fi control, brightness, airplane mode, media streaming via AirPlay, camera functions, the calculator and a new flashlight feature. Control Center is accessed by swiping up from the bottom.
iTunes Radio is a free, ad-supported music streaming service that allows for customized radio stations, a listening history and Siri and iTunes Store integration.
Other new features include AirDrop support for sharing files between other Apple devices, full multitasking for apps, animated wallpapers, new ringtones, photo grouping by time and location, and an optional male voice for Siri.
The iOS 7 update can be downloaded by iPhone 4 and up, iPad 2 and up, and the fifth-generation iPod Touch.
Additionally, Apple announced a suite of productivity apps including iWork, iPhoto, iMovie and others will be available for free on new iOS devices.
Investors apparently were not blown away by the new Apple offerings. Trading for company shares fell $11.53, or 2.2 percent, to close at $494.64 per share Tuesday on the Nasdaq.
On sale: Available for pre-order Sept. 20
Cost: $199 for 16GB, $299 for 32GB, $399 for 64GB under contract
New features: 64-bit processor, enhanced camera lens and flash, fingerprint recognition
Robert Evatt 918-581-8447
(c)2013 Tulsa World (Tulsa, Okla.)
Visit Tulsa World (Tulsa, Okla.) at www.tulsaworld.com
Distributed by MCT Information Services
Original headline: Apple unveils 2 new iPhone 5 models
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