With the iOS 7 release date set for sometime this fall, it’s likely that we will see a new iPhone emerge alongside the update when it arrives. That device is heavily rumored to be the iPhone 5S, the successor to the iPhone 5, and while an iPhone 5S release date hasn’t been announced, it’s time to take a deep dive into what not to expect from it when it arrives this fall.
Earlier this month, Apple debuted its radically changed iOS 7 operating system, showcasing the software at its annual Worldwide Developers Conference at the Moscone Center in San Francisco. The software is a drastic change from the previous versions of iOS, including iOS 6, and it will be coming with a number of new features in tow as well.
iOS 7 is expected to deliver AirDrop for the iPhone 5 and iPod touch, new camera filters for the redesigned Photo application, overhauled Calendar and lock screen and sweeping changes to the user interface. Of course, the software isn’t set in stone and Apple is apt to make some significant changes to the look and features of the software before its arrival sometime later this year.
What is set in stone though is its release date and the devices that it will be heading to. Owners of the iPhone 4 and up, iPad 2 and up and the iPod touch fifth-generation can expect the software to touch down sometime this fall. That means that it will arrive sometime before the end of November.
When it does, Apple is expected to deliver a new iPhone model which rumors have pegged as the iPhone 5S, an incremental update to the iPhone 5 that will come with improved hardware. Rumors insist that it will feature a new camera, possibly 13MP, and a faster processor for improved performance for things like gaming.
The device is likely going to be arriving alongside iOS 7 sometime this fall as iPhones typically arrive with new versions of iOS. We have already taken a look at what to expect from the iPhone 5S release and now, it’s time to take an in-depth look at what not to expect from the iPhone 5S release this fall.
iPhone 5S Release Outside the Fall
While Apple hasn’t said when or if it will be releasing a new iPhone model, consumers shouldn’t expect the release of a new iPhone to land anywhere outside of the fall months of 2013.
Apple typically releases a new version of iOS alongside a new piece of iPhone hardware and there are no signs indicating that it will do something different this year. In fact, all signs point to an iPhone 5S release with iOS 7 this fall. Rumors have specifically pointed to a release in September for the iPhone 5S, which would mean a release of iOS 7 in September as well.
Despite iOS 7 being in beta, and it said to be a work in progress, we don’t see the iOS 7 release getting delayed beyond the fall which means that consumers should not expect the iPhone 5S release to fall outside of September, October or November. September at this point is the front-runner but that doesn’t mean its guaranteed.
Issue Free Release
Those hoping for an issue free iPhone 5S release need to keep dreaming. While Apple and its carriers take strides to ensure a smooth process for those looking to buy a new iPhone at launch, there are inevitable issues that arise every time Apple releases its new smartphone.
First, there are supply issues that may or may not be purposefully done in order to create demand. Whatever the case may be, Apple’s new iPhone is generally sold out ahead of its release date meaning those who don’t catch a pre-order will have to brave Apple retail locations or third-party retailers. Don’t expect the iPhone 5S to be widely available on release day.
Those looking to pre-order the iPhone 5S will likely run into issues not only with the websites of Apple and the carriers that offer the iPhone 5S, but also with the pre-order process itself.
Last year we saw all sorts of issues with the iPhone 5 pre-order including shipping dates that didn’t make sense, customer service representatives that were in the dark, and orders placed within the first few hours missing launch day delivery.
The iPhone 5S release will likely take place in the fall but don’t expect it to go smoothly, even with Apple’s years of experience.
Prospective iPhone 5S buyers should know that the iPhone 5S isn’t expected to follow in the footsteps of the iPhone 5 when it comes to launch day carriers. Users simply should not expect the same launch day carriers as the iPhone 5.
With T-Mobile now selling the iPhone 5 and U.S. Cellular confirming the iPhone for later this year, it’s clear that the iPhone 5S release will be widespread amongst the nation’s largest service providers.
And while we should see new carriers, don’t expect U.S. Cellular and T-Mobile to avoid the aforementioned pre-order issues.
In-Store Pre-Order That’s Worthwhile
For those that are looking to get the iPhone 5S when it’s released, simply put, it’s best to avoid third-party retailers at all costs. Like the iPhone 5, consumers should not expect a smooth experience outside of Apple and the iPhone 5S carriers.
Last year, we attempted to pre-order an iPhone 5 at Best Buy. And while we were successful, we were informed that our iPhone 5 was ready to pick up, several months after its release date. Retailers like Best Buy often utilize pre-orders that don’t guarantee the device on its release date so for those that are looking to get it quick, it’s better to simply avoid third-party retailers.
For those that are going to brave them this year with the iPhone 5S, don’t expect a worthwhile pre-order.
When the iPhone 5S is released this fall, don’t expect it to arrive with a different price tag. Apple will more than likely keep its typical pricing in tact which means that users will be facing $199.99 on-contract pricing and up, expect at T-Mobile which has moved to off-contract pricing only.
The iPhone’s greatest competition, the Galaxy S4 and HTC One both checked in for $199.99 and we don’t expect to see Apple drop below that, even if the competition is fiercer than usual.
So for those that are interested in this device, it’s best to start saving for the usual price tags.
Immediate iPhone 5S Price Drops
While Android devices typically see price drops the day that they are released, those looking for instant discounts on the iPhone 5S will be sorely disappointed come release day.
Apple’s iPhones typically do not see the discounts that major Android flagships do on the day of their release. And while the iPhone 5 saw more deals over the last year than the iPhone 4S, we don’t expect that to extend to the iPhone 5S at launch.
Instead, buyers will likely be hard pressed to find a deal, even months after the release of the new iPhone.