Skip to main content

Apple splits its pitch: Can it work?

By Stuart Miles, Special to CNN
updated 8:58 AM EDT, Wed September 11, 2013
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Apple has launched two new iPhones, one for early adopters and one for budget crowd
  • Tech journalist Stuart Miles says Apple is staying within its remit of keeping things simple
  • Most importantly, the company is expanding in new markets like China and Japan

Editor's note: Technology journalist Stuart Miles is CEO and founder of gadget review website Pocket-lint. He can be found tweeting at @stuartmiles.

(CNN) -- For the first time, Apple has launched not one, but two iPhones at its now-annual iPhone launch event.

As the rumors predicted, Apple has split its phone line into a premium all singing, all dancing flagship phone for the early tech adopters and one that will play to the so-called "budget" crowd looking for an iPhone with a more colourful, youthful approach.

The expected result? A successful one. The iPhone 5C gives Apple an affordable phone for those that it has yet to lure into buying an iPhone 4 and iPhone 4S. At the same time it has helped create a greater gulf between the two devices that was never really there with the iPhone 4S and the iPhone 5.

Will people buy new iPhones?

Now, early tech adopters who opt for the iPhone 5S -- compared to their parents or kids that will more than likely opt for the iPhone 5C -- can claim a faster, more powerful phone. It has greater connectivity, an abundance of sensors, including the new addition of fingerprint scanner called TouchID, and more premium materials.

WATCH MORE: Will Apple get its mojo back?

Check out Apple's new iPhone 5C

It's a clever move from Apple as it protects its justification for higher prices. It has, at the same time, created a phone for "the people," that in reality is just as powerful as the previous flagship, the iPhone 5, at a knocked-down price.

iPhone 5S to come in gold, gray, silver

Not that the competition will be saying that. SIM-free, the new iPhone 5C is still expensive compared to the HTC One and the Samsung Galaxy S4.

iPhone 5S has fingerprint technology

It might be budget, but Apple believes even this "cheaper" phone is the best on the market. Even though it comes with an "unashamedly plastic shell," in the words of Jony Ive at Apple, you are still going to pay for it.

That shouldn't be a problem. In the hand, it feels great and very much akin to the iPhone 3G and iPhone 3GS we all raved about over five years ago.

READ MORE: Hands-on impressions

New hardware combined with new software is certainly enough for Apple at the moment. The naysayers will say that it's not, that Apple has failed to innovate here and that there isn't much to woo you from Android with its treats and tricks offered by Samsung, Sony, and HTC.

Apple's approach has always been about simplicity, about delivering a device that is easy to use, a device that is the best it can make.

If you look at that remit, Apple's done it again. It hasn't allowed itself to be sidetracked with gimmicks that sound impressive but are never used.

Android users will most likely tell you that they've never used face recognition to unlock their phone, although they've probably tried it.

There is no eye-scrolling tech, movie modes that automatically make films from your footage, or ways to determine what wine you are drinking by snapping the label.

READ MORE: How your finger can become a password

That, from a marketing message, could make the playability of the two devices sound limiting. But Apple prefers the tried and tested solid approach. The phone just works.

These two phones might sway some Android users across and probably sweep up most of the former BlackBerry users.

More importantly, they will open the iPhone to a global audience that is looking for its first smartphone, especially in the new markets like China and Japan.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 8:36 AM EDT, Mon August 18, 2014
Europe's deteriorating relationship with Russia has hit the region's growth, even before new food sanctions begin to bite.
updated 12:34 PM EDT, Wed July 16, 2014
With cyberattacks on the rise and here to stay, it's a modern-day challenge for people and businesses to get smarter about preventing them.
updated 9:24 AM EDT, Thu August 14, 2014
Airstrikes, rebels seizing control of oil fields, plus a severe refugee crisis are a recipe for market panic. So why are Iraq oil prices stable?
updated 11:24 AM EDT, Sun July 20, 2014
Evidence points to pro-Russian separatists as perpetrators of the attack and Vladimir Putin is facing uncomfortable questions, David Clark writes.
updated 10:40 AM EDT, Tue August 5, 2014
The biggest Ebola outbreak in history is taking its toll in Western Africa, hitting some of West Africa's most vulnerable economies.
updated 5:02 AM EDT, Thu July 3, 2014
Macau has overtaken Switzerland in the wealth stakes, being named the world's fourth richest territory by the World Bank.
updated 10:47 AM EDT, Fri July 18, 2014
Saudi Arabian Bateel brand is best known for its delectable dates but it now has more than a dozen cafes and a new bakery in the works.
updated 7:00 AM EDT, Thu July 17, 2014
A British nanotech company has created what it says is the world's darkest material. It is so dark the human eye can't discern its shape and form.
updated 12:02 PM EDT, Wed July 16, 2014
Jibo robot is designed to be an organizer, educator and assist family members. CNN's Maggie Lake met him and says she was impressed with his skills.
updated 5:09 PM EDT, Fri July 18, 2014
American burger joints have sprung up all over London, but how to know which ones are best? CNN's Jim Boulden investigates.
updated 8:22 AM EDT, Wed June 18, 2014
Sandwiched in between Iraq and Syria, Jordan's destiny seems to be one of a constant struggle for survival. John Defterios explains.
updated 11:02 AM EDT, Wed June 18, 2014
At the last football World Cup, it was all about 3D. This time around, it's nothing less than 4K.
updated 6:58 AM EDT, Wed July 16, 2014
Bob Mazzer has photographed inside London's Tube network for 40 years. He's captured history.
updated 1:12 PM EDT, Fri July 18, 2014
Exotic animals are becoming a profitable business opportunity for Nicaraguan entrepreneurs. CNN's Rafael Romo reports.
updated 11:29 AM EDT, Fri June 13, 2014
Iraq produces 3.3 million barrels per day and has the world's fourth-largest oil reserves. But the current crisis is putting all this in danger.
updated 8:22 AM EDT, Wed June 18, 2014
Sandwiched in between Iraq and Syria, Jordan's destiny seems to be one of a constant struggle for survival. John Defterios explains.
updated 9:14 AM EDT, Mon June 16, 2014
The gas standoff between Russia and Ukraine could have a knock-on effect on Europe. Explore this map to find out why is the EU nervous.
updated 6:58 AM EDT, Wed July 16, 2014
Bob Mazzer has photographed inside London's Tube network for 40 years. He's captured history.
updated 8:06 AM EDT, Tue June 17, 2014
The UK capital promotes its tech stars and shows it can compete with Silicon Valley. Here are five companies that pitch to make it big.
ADVERTISEMENT