Anyone looking to the iPhone 5C as a low-cost way to experience the best of Apple might be disappointed, it has emerged, amid forecasts that the forthcoming, entry-level phone could be missing some software features.
The handset informally dubbed the ‘iPhone 5 Cheap’ by tech wags has long been expected to use parts recycled from earlier iPhones to keep costs down and swap premium materials for a more economical plastic housing.
However, in a note to investors seen by Apple Insider, Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster forecasts that it won't just be hardware where corners are cut. Apple will equip the phone with a stripped-down version of the gadget-maker’s iOS 7 software too.
As well as innovations such as improved multi-tasking and the revamped notfications centre, the limited-functionality version of iOS 7 could do with away with the likes of voice app Siri, Munster claims.
Although given that statistics show that Siri is still used very, very infrequently by most iPhone owners, we think it’s pretty unlikely to be missed too much by people who opt for the cheaper model.
His other forecasts for the phone are broadly in line with previous rumours. That means he’s predicting that the handset will pack a four-inch screen, as well as a lower-grade processor and other downgraded internal components.
Munster’s advice to clients when it comes to the next standard iPhone, aka the iPhone 5S, chimes with existing speculation that the handset’s upgrades will be largely restricted to its internals.
Although he backs talk that the iPhone 5S will be home to a fingerprint sensor in the home button, Munster claims that the handset’s chief improvements will be a more powerful processor, a longer-life battery, more storage and other general enhancements to add to the phone’s brawn.
And in news to irk anyone who has recently invested in an iPhone 5, Piper Jaffray's number-cruncher also throws his weight behind talk that Apple could drop the current-gen model and tips the iPhone 5C to replace the iPhone 5 as the option for smartphone fans on a budget.
Both phones are expected to tip up in early September.