Published in Mobiles

Renders of cheap, plasticky iPhone emerge

by on03 July 2013

Doesn’t look half bad actually

Apple is gearing up to introduce an all new mid-range iPhone along with a refreshed iPhone 5 over in three months or so and to be honest we find the frugal, plastic iPhone a bit more interesting than the 5S.

Over the last couple of weeks a number of photos showing alleged components and leaked drawings of the cheap iPhone emerged. The leaks prompted Mac Rumours to commission a design outfit to produce high quality mock-ups in 3D, revealing the upcoming iPhone in minute detail.

The plastic iPhone is about a millimetre thicker than the iPhone 5, but it also features gently bevelled edges, so it hides the extra millimetre quite well. It doesn’t look cheap and knowing Apple we’re sure that it won’t fell cheap, either. Nokia and HTC rolled out a number of great polycarbonate phones over the past couple of years and Apple can’t afford not to offer a similar level of build quality.


With that in mind, we have to wonder whether the “cheap” iPhone could cannibalize 5S sales. It certainly has the looks and brains shouldn’t be far behind – unless Apple decides to intentionally cripple it and leave more room for the 5S. Alternatively, Apple could chose to slap a not so cheap price tag on it.

Frankly if the price difference ends up near the rumoured $200 mark, we’re not sure we’d go for a 5S over this thing. The 5S is a bit thinner and looks posh, with its all-aluminium build. However, it is more scratch prone than the 4-series and plastics aren’t what they used to be. Well, at least not if they’re done right, i.e. the HTC and Nokia way rather than the Samsung way.

Also, we can’t but wonder what will happen to the discounted iPhone 5 after the low-cost iPhone and iPhone 5S enter the fray. If the frugal plastic iPhone ends up cheaper than the iPhone come October, it might destroy iPhone 5 sales, hence we’re starting to suspect they will cost about the same.

You can check out more lovely renders over at Mac Rumors.

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