Faster: Apple EO Tim Cook talks about the new iPhone 5S and 5C at its launch on Tuesday. *AFP photo
Faster: Apple EO Tim Cook talks about the new iPhone 5S and 5C at its launch on Tuesday. *AFP photo

The much-heralded Apple iPhone launch threw in a few surprises along with the expected announcements. 

Apple announced on Tuesday it was discontinuing the iPhone 5 with new models 5C and 5S soon to be available. The move was made for Apple to try and shore up sales to a highly competitive Android product.

The 5S will be marketed as a high-end phone with more premium features while Apple is hoping the 5C will grab market share by being more affordable.

It also said the iPhone 4 will still be available, but for free with a two-year contract.

The iPhone 5C will be released in the US as a ‘low cost’ model with a 16GB starting at $99 while the iPhone 5S having a suggested retail price (SRP) of $199 for 16GB. The 5S will also be available in 32Gb ($299 US SRP) and 64GB ($399 US SRP). 

The 4S will only come in an 8GB model. 

The higher model iPhone 5S will have an 8-megapixel, 1080p front-facing camera with a dual element flash while the iPhone 5C will have an 8-megapixel, 720p front-facing camera.

There is no improvement in battery-life over the iPhone 5 with both the new models sporting 10 hours of talk time. 

The iPhone 5S will come in grey, silver and the much-hyped gold colour. The 5S will be available in blue, black, green, pink, yellow and white.

The 5S weighs in at 3.95 ounces and a sleek 0.3 inches thick while the 5C weighs 4.65 ounces and is 0.35 inches thick. 

The iPhone 5S has Apple’s high-end 84-bit A7 processor, which will make it twice as fast as the 5C and the soon to be defunct 5. It also comes with a fingerprint scanner for added security. 

Both phones will run on the IOS7 operating system.

Both phones have a 4-inch screen size and some had predicted Apple was going to increase it to compete with other models like the Samsung Galaxy s4.