Two new iPhones, so many questions. Should you upgrade?
It's the dilemma facing iPhone owners, now that the wait is over: Apple is going Technicolor, with the launch of the plastic bodied iPhone 5C.
New Phone #1: 5C
The 5C, which which will go on sale Wednesday, Sept. 20, will feature a plastic case and come in 5 colors.
C is for color, not for cheap. But it will be cheaper, selling for just $99 with a 2-year contract, challenging other low cost smartphones on the market.
New Phone #2: 5S
Apple is also upgrading last year's iPhone 5 with a 5S.
It's biggest change: A new Home button with fingerprint sensor, so you can log on with a touch of your finger.
It will also be faster than the 5, have a dual flash for better pictures, slow motion video, and will also come in the color gold.
Apple will not discount the older iPhone 5, but rather will discontinue it. Customers wanting a cheaper phone now have two options: the $99 C, or the older 4S, which will be free with a 2 year contract.
And both new phones will feature the new IOS 7 operating system.
Should you upgrade?
For people still using an iPhone 4 or 4S that's getting long in the tooth, the announcement was very good news.
Cincinnati iPhone owner Allie Bagley said "definitely, mine is cracked up and down the screen, so it's a sure thing for me."
But others we spoke with downtown told us the new phones are missing the one thing they really want: A wider screen, like the Samsung Galaxy.
They're not sure they are ready to upgrade to the 5S.
"I may hold out a little bit, I'll definitely hold out a little while, to see how it performs," said Cincinnati iPhone 4S owner Joseph Shawn.
If he waits till next fall, he just might get a bigger phone, in the next generation iPhone 6.
The rumor mill is already churning on that one, with hints that its screen will be as large as the Galaxy's or even bigger.
If you are unsure, you can upgrade your existing phone free of charge to the new IOS 7 operating system starting Sept. 18, so your phone has the new look.
Whichever phone you decide on, don't waste your money.
You can read a full review on the new iPhones from Associated Press Technology writer Michael Liedtke below:
One of the best things about Apple's latest iPhones is the slick new iOS 7 software that runs the devices. But that souped-up operating system could end up hurting sales because the free software upgrade will also work on iPhones released since 2010, giving owners of the older models less incentive to buy Apple's newest products.
Perhaps unwittingly, even Apple's software boss Craig Federighi alluded to this potential problem while he was bragging about iOS 7 at the company's unveiling of its new phones Tuesday. He predicted that anyone who elects to install the software will feel "like they're getting an all-new device."
I understood what Federighi meant once I was able to see the iOS 7's improvements in action on Apple's two new iPhones, the 5C and the 5S. Although Apple announced iOS 7 at a conference three months ago, Tuesday marked the first time the company allowed reporters to experience the software hands-on.
Although the iPhone 5C is less expensive than its predecessor, the iPhone 5, iOS 7 almost made it look fancier than previous generations. As an iPhone 5 owner, I was feeling a bit envious until I remembered that I'll be able to spiff up my device, too, when the software is released on Sept. 18. The operating system will work on the iPhone 4 and later models, iPad 2s and subsequent versions, and the iPod Touch that came out late last year.
iOS 7 looks much different than previous versions of the operating system because it no longer displays iPhone apps as three-dimensional, embossed objects meant to mirror their real-world counterparts. The icons instead are flatter and more colorful.
Any significant change in design typically upsets users familiar with the old way of doing things, but I suspect the complaints about iOS 7 will be muted unless there are some terrible bugs in the software that weren't evident during the brief time that I was given to experiment.
I am fairly certain most people who download iOS 7 are going to be pleased. The software makes it easier to navigate around an iPhone and adds some compelling new features.
The additions include the ability to stream music through an advertising-supported service called iTunes Radio and five free apps that used to cost consumers anywhere from 99 cents to $4.99 apiece. The free apps are Apple's photo-editing tool, iPhoto, and video-editing program, iMovie, as well as work-oriented apps called Pages, Numbers and Keynote.
Apple doesn't appear to be removing any popular apps built into the operating system, as best as I could tell. The company did that last year when it replaced