iPhone 5S and 5C: The Complete Buyer’s Guide

iPhone 5S and 5C: The Complete Buyer’s Guide

The new iPhone 5C and iPhone 5S have officially launched in many parts of the world (and coming to the remainder very soon), and everyone who want one on launch day will probably be standing in line! If you fall in that category, you may still have some questions about which iPhone to buy – or whether you should upgrade at all! We’ve put together this handy guide to help you answer the tough questions!

Should I Upgrade?

If you already have an iPhone 5, you may be wondering whether it will be worth upgrading to the iPhone 5S or 5C. In short, it depends on how you’ll use the device. If you frequently use your iPhone 5 for photos, the new camera (with its sapphire lens cover and improved optics) should be a real benefit to you – and the new stabilization and slo-mo features will be a big help if you shoot a lot of iPhone video.

The 5C, on the other hand, is not a very compelling upgrade at all for iPhone 5 owners – at least in our opinion. It should appeal very much to those looking at upgrading from the iPhone 4S, however! We think there are plenty of reasons to upgrade – what will your reason be?

Should I Choose Black or White – or, Which iPhone 5C Color Should I Choose?

This boils down to personal preference, as well as how you plan on using your iPhone. All three versions of the iPhone 5S look incredible, and the iPhone 5C looks a lot better in person than you might imagine/. I’ve heard people say that white is better for reading and viewing documents, or that black is better for video. I’m not too sure that the color makes a huge difference. This is especially true of the color options for the iPhone 5C – except you’ll be looking at it every day, so pick whichever color makes you happiest!

Which Carrier Should You Choose?

In the U.S., the iPhone 5C and 5S are available on Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon, and AT&T. It’s also available on many carriers around the world. Researching pricing, LTE support, data caps, and other factors are a great idea to help make sure you select the right carrier. It’s also worth taking a look at a coverage map to see which of the two carriers have better network coverage near your home, workplace, and places you frequently visit.

Should I Choose 16GB, 32GB, or 64GB?

If you’re upgrading, and you’re already close to capacity on your current iPhone, it’s likely going to be worth it to move to the next size up. If you’re buying your first iPhone, think about what you’ll be doing on your device. If you plan to store photos, music and videos on your device, or if you plan to use a lot of apps or play a lot of games, you should probably choose at least a 32GB iPhone.

AppleCare+: Is It Worth It?


The answer to this question is almost always yes. The $99 AppleCare+ plan offered for the new iPad not only extends your warranty to a full two years, but also covers up to 2 incidents of accidental damage protection. If you’re at all accident prone, or think there’s even a remote chance that your iPad may encounter problems (like a stuck home button) after the first year, it would be wise to purchase AppleCare.

Where Should I Buy My iPhone?

There are a number of retail stores where you can buy the iPhone 5 – but I tend to recommend the Apple Store as the best bet to make sure you get a device before they run out! For more information, check out the following posts:

Wrapping it Up

Don’t worry if you make the wrong choice at first. Load your new iPhone up with content and see how much space you have left. Apple doesn’t charge a restocking fee, and will let you trade for another model within 14 days. They also keep a stock of replacement devices on hand, so even if the Apple Online Store and Apple Retail Stores are out of stock, you’ll likely still be able to make an exchange. Good luck, and enjoy your new iPhone!

Check out our iPhone 5S and 5C launch page for our full assortment of tips, guides, apps, resources, and other coverage!