Apple released a cheaper, lower-memory version of its iPhone 5c today in the hopes of enticing sagging sales for the colorful device. But that new eight-gig version won't be available stateside. Yet.
The new lower-cost version will be essentially identical to the regular iPhone 5c except that it holds just eight gigs of memory, compared to the regular 16-gig and 32-gig editions. Apple, ever targeting the overseas market, has made the phone available for sale in China, France, Germany, Great Britain and Australia, all without a contract. In Great Britain, the new 8-gig version will cost £429 (about $710 American dollars), significantly cheaper than the 16-gig price of £469 (~$780) and the 32-gig of £549 (~$910). The 8-gig version in China will be about the same as the 8-gig in Britain, and it will be cheaper than the 16 and 32-gig models.
Though sale numbers for the iPhone 5c specifically have not been released, the premium plastic 5c has had trouble selling in overseas markets. It's not quite cheap enough to be a mid-price alternative, and its not elegant enough to take down the more expensive but flashier iPhone 5s. Lower-priced smartphones, Android in particular, have taken the Chinese market by storm, far outpacing the 5c's sales. The 8-gig 5c will also have to compete with Apple's own 4s, which is still selling for even lower prices to people not obsessed with getting the latest and greatest creations.
In any case, Americans won't be able to buy the new 8-gig version from the U.S. Apple store online. If it ever does go on sale here, expect it to be even cheaper than the 16-gig smartphone price of $99 and the 32-gig at $199. That is, with a two-year contract extension, a condition that those overseas don't have to deal with.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.