Apple's new 'plastic' iPhone 5C – for the colourful – will be released by the tech giant in Canadian stores on September 20

Apple unveils colourful iPhone 5C, revamped 5S, and new Touch ID fingerprint scanner

Apple's iPhone 5C models will start at $99 with a 2-year plan, and $199 for the new 5S. It was revealed on Tuesday in California.

Well, there you have it, and you might not even need a phone cover.

Apple unveiled its new iPhone 5C on Tuesday morning in California, and it’s certainly a radical model – at least, radical by definition from a company whose normal year-by-year changes involve minuscule size differences and retina display that might not make up for the hundreds extra the new device will cost you.

The 5C will be coloured, it will be plastic, and it will be available in Canadian stores by Sept. 20, 2013. (Available for pre-order by Sept. 13.) It will be available in White, Yellow, Pink, Blue, and Green.

Apple also unveiled the iPhone 5S, which will be an upgrade on its current model – practical, and more the high-end line we expect from Apple, but not as colourful.

The biggest development, however, is not the colours or the naming convention of Apple’s new phones, at all, but the new ‘Touch ID’ fingerprint scanner. The scanner will allow users to purchases apps and to unlock their phone with the simple use of their thumb.

“It’s the most forward-thinking phone we’ve ever created,” said Apple exec Phil Schiller. “The iPhone 5S is a huge leap forward in mobile computing performance.”

(Prices for the phones range from $99 to $199 USD for the iPhone 5C, and $199 to $399 for the 5S, with a two-year contract.)

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The company’s website is now flush with paint-swirled news and taglines: lines like “For the colourful” and “Engineered to the brightest specifications”.

England’s The Daily Mail (Online) – which has become the most-read news site in the world – referred to Apple’s release as a “make or break event” for the company, especially now that it’s not alone (or even ahead) in the world’s cell phone market.

“The release of the iPhone 5C marks a step away from Apple’s luxe image,” text from Mail Online read, just above photos of the cute, bubbly, almost gum ball-like new phones.

“Many believe the move is a desperate bid to poach Samsung buyers, as the Korean company and its plastic, cheaper handsets go from strength to strength.”

Not to be forgotten among the 5C’s appearance, however, is the 5S. The newest pride of the iPhone roster will come in three colours – gold, silver, and something called space grey.

At the event, Apple CEO Tim Cook spoke to the crowd in front of a chart that showed the company’s cumulative sale growth since 2008, when the original iPhone was first released. (If you’re counting, that makes eight total new models in five years.)

Cook’s graph simply showed rising sales that appear to never end, but website Quartz was quick to point the real metrics of Apple’s growth – or strained growth, as it were – and its need to revolutionize the model its essentially clung to since the middle of 2008.

That was before President Obama, before the Samsung Galaxy, and definitely before Tim Cook.

“Showing sales cumulatively tacitly overstates the number of iPhone users, since some iPhone purchases are replacing older or broken iPhones,” writes Quartz’s David Yanofsky. “Many of the phones Apple is claiming as praiseworthy in this chart found the junkyard years ago.

“Although Apple can boast more than 400 million iPhones sold for all time, its quarterly sales of the product have declined over the last three quarters.”

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