Apple’s recent unveiling of the iPhone 5S along with its colorful little brother, the iPhone 5C, presents some intriguing possibilities for smartphone consumers looking to upgrade their devices. While both phones bring fresh design elements to the table, it’s the hardware under the hood and how it compares to the phone you already have that should ultimately be the determining factors when deciding which of the two to purchase.

CNET has come up with a simple chart that breaks down the specifications for both iPhone 5S and the iPhone 5C, and one of the first things you’ll likely notice is the significant difference in price. Whether you purchase the phone with the two-year contract discount or bite the bullet and pay full price, the 5S is going to cost you roughly twice as much as the 5C at the checkout counter. If you’re the type that likes to be on the bleeding edge of technology, this probably doesn’t come as too much of a shock. Money is typically no object to iPhone loyalists who always like to have the latest and greatest device in their hands.

For those of you on a budget, the iPhone 5C is likely going to be the more appealing choice because of its price point. Before you take the upgrade plunge, however, be sure the move is going to be worth your while. Otherwise, you could find yourself shelling out your hard-earned cash for a phone that isn’t that much better than what you already have.

If you’re currently carrying an iPhone 4S or earlier, then the 5C will definitely be a worthwhile purchase due to the fact that you’re going to see a substantial quality increase in both speed and screen size. For those of you who own an iPhone 5, however, you may want to consider sitting this one out if the 5S isn’t within your price range. The 5C is essentially a repackaged version of the phone you’re currently toting around, with the only major difference being the color choices.

If money isn’t a factor and both phones represent a meaningful upgrade from your current device, then you’ll want to consider the most significant difference between the iPhone 5S and the iPhone 5C: the processor.

The 5S features Apple’s new 64-bit A7 processor, which operates at nearly twice the speed as the A6 processor found in both the iPhone 5 and the 5C. If you’re an avid mobile gamer or enjoy shooting high-definition video with your phone, the A7 chip makes the 5s the hands-down winner in both respects. On top of that, the device also features burst-mode photography that allows you to shoot up to 10 frames per second with the push of a button. This feature is a must if you’re looking for good action shots from your smartphone.

In the end, what it really comes down to with these phones is features vs. value. The iPhone 5S has all the bells and whistles that you would expect from a newly released Apple product, but the 5C offers a cost-effective upgrade route for those who don’t already have an iPhone 5 in their hands.

Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons




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