The iPhone 5c was just unveiled and released recently along with its bigger brother, the iPhone 5s. Unfortunately though, immediate sales results are not looking as good as Apple had foreseen. The iPhone 5s is surely getting all the love that it needs but for several key reasons the iPhone 5c is not doing as well as it should. Sales for the second device are not high despite the popularity of the brand and the marketing ploy that pushes the iPhone 5c as a cheaper but reasonable alternative to the iPhone 5s.
Reasons Why the IPhone 5c Is Not Selling Well
To better understand what went wrong, here is a quick look at some of the key reasons why the iPhone 5c is not doing as well as it should:
- First of all, the “C” in the iPhone 5c Does Not Stand For “Cheap” – The “C” suffix can send a lot of wrong messages to consumers and in this case many assume that the iPhone 5c is a low-end solution for those wanting a next-generation smart phone. Truth is, the 5c is not really a low-end phone. When you look at the specifications of the device it is basically the old iPhone 5 in a new coat. It has all the same specs, from having the same processor to the same camera. The only difference is that the 5c features the new iOS 7 and a heavier poly-carbonate case.
That’s not saying that the iPhone 5c is a bad phone per se. As mentioned, it is a replica of the original iPhone 5 but with a few new tricks up its sleeves such as the poly-carbonate case and the new iOS. When you look at it as a standalone device it is very competitive but with the 5s just right there beside it you cannot deny that the upgrades of the latter can make all the difference.
- It’s Not Priced Cheaply Either – many assumed that the iPhone 5c was going to be Apple’s answer for low-end budget consumers. Apparently this is not the case. Here’s a comparison of the price of the 2-year contract iPhone 5c and iPhone 5s:
- iPhone 5s – $199, $299, $399
- iPhone 5c – $99, $199, $549 for an off-contract 16GB device and $649 for the 32GB device
When you look at the prices like this, it does look like the iPhone 5s is the only way to go. With only $100 additional payment you are getting a better device built with a better processor, better camera, and better metal casing. So yes, it is cheaper but only marginally and this is only if you go for the 2-year contracts. When you try to order the device unlocked, the iPhone 5c suddenly becomes a very expensive product especially in areas outside the US such as India and China, with the $549 and $649 price tags.
- Camera Performance Does Matter – a lot of people use their smart phones for telecommunicating. They don’t just use their phone for texting and calling anymore. Now people use video apps like Facetime and others such as Skype or Viber. In this aspect the, nothing has changed as the iPhone 5c has the same 720p 1.2MP front-facing camera, just like what its older brother, the iPhone 5 has. Whilst both the iPhone 5c and iPhone 5s share the same Facetime camera specification, the iPhone 5s clearly trumps the iPhone 5c in the rear camera department.
The worst part though is that this is still the iPhone and that means the camera you get is never going to be as good as what is found in other devices, notably the Sony Xpera Z1 and the Samsung Galaxy S4. Both the 5s and 5c cameras suffer from over-exposure and with the 5c having a slightly more inferior camera than the 5s and other major phones out in the market, consumers will almost always feel cheated.
The Issue of the iPhone 5c
The iPhone 5c is not a bad phone by any stretch but the marketing for the device is way off point. This is not a cheaper iPhone 5 but it isn’t the high-end powerhouse that one would expect from Apple either. It is right in the upper end of the middle-class smart phone category.
Unfortunately, it is that middle ground that spells the doom of the iPhone 5c. If customers couldn’t afford a high end device then they wouldn’t even look at the 5c because it isn’t that much cheaper at all. If customers wanted a powerful device and they had the money to spend, they would prefer the 5s over the 5c simply because they get a better phone for a small extra additional charge ($100). For both low-end and high-end budgets, there is simply no need for the iPhone 5c.
That is the real dilemma that Apple faces – there is just no need for the 5c. They repackaged the original iPhone 5 as a new device with a plastic case and a new interface but the ongoing trend of technology and the price that they demand simply do not meet. Would you trade your iPhone 5 for an iPhone 5c with a plastic case? And because of that, the sales of the device aren’t going as well as Apple had hoped.