Everything You Need to Know About the New Apple iPhone 5S & iPhone 5C

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After months of speculation, the highly anticipated Apple iPhone 5S has been officially unveiled. At first glance Apple's new flagship phone, the iPhone 5S, looks very similar to the previous iPhone 5. But take a closer look and you'll notice there's an array of hardware upgrades both inside and out, including a fingerprint sensor, improved camera, a new color to choose from, and a brand new operating system. We've gathered up all the highlights from today's Apple event below, outlining everything you need to know about the iPhone 5S and its colorful and plastic sibling, the iPhone 5C...

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The Apple iPhone 5S:

New Fingerprint Scanner: The biggest news today was the announcement of the new Home button, now also a fingerprint scanner called Touch ID. To unlock the iPhone using the built-in fingerprint reader, users can now click, then hold either a finger or thumb onto the 500 ppi resolution touch capacitive sensor for a few second as a biometric authentication log-in. Users will also have the option to turn this feature off to use a Passcode or swipe to unlock like previous models.

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A user's fingerprint can also be used to make iTunes purchases. All fingerprint ID information is encrypted and stored onto the A7 processor.

New Colors: Actually there's just one new color: Gold. But the black model has been officially relabeled as "Space Gray" and the white model is now called "Silver".

Upgraded Hardware Specs: First 64-bit dual core A7 processor; 1GB RAM; 16 GB, 32 GB and 64 GB storage. Performance is reportedly twice as fast as previous iPhone 5S, but your mileage may vary depending upon applications loaded. There was no change to 1136-by-640-pixel resolution 326 ppi 4" Retina display.

An interesting addition within is the M7 motion co-processor, a sidekick to the main A7 processor designed to continually measure motion data using the accelerometer, gyroscope, and compass, alongside the GPS chip, all designed for more accurate health and fitness applications.

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New iSight Camera: Apple has upgraded the iSight camera with a 5-element lens with f/2.2 aperture and 15% larger sensor area compared to the previous iPhone 5. Bigger pixel capture means improved light and color with less noise. The camera preemptively adjusts for exposure, offering DSLR style auto-focus with auto-image stabilization, burst mode (10 fps), and "best photo" feature (automatically picks sharpest/best photo taken out of a series). Panorama photos are now as large as 28 megapixels in resolution, with a square shooting mode (Instagram friendly), and an array of built-in photo filters.

Dual LED Flash: True tone flash offers a second LED unit for more accurate and improved low light performance. One LED is white and cool, second LED is amber and warm, with camera automatically using mixture of both for an optimal image when only low light is available.

Slow Motion Video Capture: The new iPhone 5S is capable of capturing 720p video at 120 frames per second, with new slow-motion capability (with normal 1080p at 30fps).

Software: The iPhone 5S will ship with iOS 7.

Battery Life: 250 hours in standby mode on a single charge; "equal or greater to iPhone 5", 10 hours 3G talk, 8 hours 3G browsing, 10 hours wi-fi browsing, 40 hours of music playback, 10 hours of video playback.

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New iPhone 5S Leather Case: natural aniline-dyed leather available in 5 colors for $39.00

Pricing: $199 for 16Gb, $299 for 32GB, $399 for 64GB (2 year contract)

Available: Pre-order September 20th


Also announced today:

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Multicolor Apple iPhone 5C: Think iPhone 5 specs, but instead of an aluminum construction, the iPhone 5C is made with a plastic exterior (or as Jonathan Ive described it, "unapologetically plastic").

  • A6 processor
  • 4" Retina display
  • 8MP iSight camera (same as the iPhone 5)
  • Larger battery (compared to iPhone 5)
  • Dual band wi-fi
  • LTE
  • Bluetooth 4.0
  • 5 new colors to choose from with contrast silicone rubber cases (6 colors, available for $29).
  • Ships with iOS 7, for $99 for 16GB, $199 for 32GB (with 2 year contract)
  • Pre-order begins September 13th, available for purchase September 20th

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iPhone 5C Color Cases

iOS 7: officially available for free September 18.

iPhone 4S:
now available for free with contract.

(Images: Apple)