The iPhone 5c/5s crossover point

John Gruber:

One interesting note: the 5C and 5S have a price overlap at $199. At that price, you can get either a 32 GB 5C or a 16 GB 5S. For those who don’t care about technical specs, I think the $199 5C is going to win.

I agree with John on this. Generally, I feel the people that would have purchased a new iPhone anyway will get the 5s, but at this price point, you may see some people switch for the colors.

  • gjgustav

    It’s the camera that’s getting me to go for the 5s.

  • northendave

    I think more people would take 16GB less storage and still get everything new 5s offers (i.e. Touch ID + better camera + A7 + M7)

  • jtr3

    I don’t think the colors have the same pull as Touch ID. My mother already called me to see if I had seen “the new iPhone that unlocks with your fingerprint and you can buy things that way, too.”

    I think it’s gonna take more than a $99 price difference to top that.

  • Tvaddic

    I disagree you could put on a case for color, the Touch ID feature is a great demo, and with store reps hyping the better camera and other features more people would probably get the 5S. But if either the 5S or 5C were out of stock, a person with $200 to spend will just get whatever the store haves.

  • Mike

    I know quite a few that will just get the colorful one. The version they get will heavily depend on how good of a salesman the guy behind the counter is.

    • Mike

      Reply to add: I think the 5C at 32GB will have larger margins for both, the carriers and Apple, so I see sales reps in both, Apple Stores and carrier stores likely pushing that model over the 5S.

  • As a tech nerd I want Touch ID and the new camera system, but as a person who only listens to podcasts and purchased music, I want as much storage for as cheap as possible.

    • TheBreen

      I’m in a similar situation, but I need more than 32GB, so I’ll have to go for the 5S anyway (at 64GB).

  • “For those who don’t care about technical specs.” But then he mustn’t consider storage a tech spec, because the phones are being referred to by their storage capacity. Colour might come into play, but for all those not concerned about the stuff like 120fps video, 64 bit processors and finger print scanners, storage is going to be a major deciding factor for sure.

  • Will

    I don’t think it’s fair to talk about the starting price of contracts as a legitimate comparison for prices. Playing with the starting fee as though it’s anything other than negligible is kind of silly, as ultimately you’re paying well over a grand by the time it’s done either way.

    If you’re buying the phone outright with no carrier bullshit attached, as a large amount of people seem to prefer these days, then there’s only a $100 difference. At the price margin they’re in that’s only incremental ($549 or $649), and as a lot of people have been saying, is far far too small. The difference was always naturally assumed to be a lot bigger; that’s why Apple were moving to a plastic case in the first place. And it’s why so many people were hyped for the idea of the 5c, it would have opened up the iPhone to everyone.

    If you can stretch to $550 for a phone, then unless you’re in a specific predicament it’s likely you’re going to stretch that extra $100 for a vastly superior phone.

    I appreciate this is a more Apple-centric blog, but it’s better for Apple in the long run to be honest and fair in both the good and (tbh for Apple, rarely) the bad, rather than doing some light ass kissing with things like this. The 5c does actually look nice, but its price point is undeniably insane. And contract starting fees is just a distraction.

  • Jack

    Storage capacity is an important thing for everybody, especially non-techies that don’t want to jump into iTunes and manage their sync prefs, and photo/video backup. Your average proud parent could probably fill up a 16 GB phone in less than a year.

  • The White Tiger

    For a lot of laymen, capacity trumps processor speed and the like. Add in the color customization and a lot of people are likely to be swayed.

    However, I think the Touch ID might do a bit to tempt people too. It’s part of the hardware so it’s something you can see and touch, it’s quite distinct on the gold model (which in itself will attract attention since it’s a new color), and it can be pushed as an easy way to secure your phone without the hassle of a passcode.

    We’ll have to see how it goes. In my case, I have an iPhone 5 and I’m mulling over the idea of switching up to a 5s.

  • Moeskido

    This is what will separate the tech nerds from the non-tech-nerd consumers. Everybody here who’s trying to make a prediction of what “more people” will do is simply projecting their own use case.

    • The White Tiger

      I think that’s a bit of a blanket statement. Some people do actually try to put thought into it.

      • Moeskido

        Agreed; I was indeed generalizing. But look through comment threads on articles about this subject. You’ll find a ton of posturing and claims of universality based on individual preference and factional pride. Which many tech writers are happy to pander to.