The iPhone 5C: A look at a case-maker's dummy unit

iPhone 5c

This is the iPhone 5c. At least, insofar as case-maker Krusell is concerned. We're in Berlin at IFA 2013, and just days before the Sept. 10 iPhone event — where we expect the new lower-cost iPhone to be officially announced — we've found one. Well, actually, we've found more than one. We've found a bunch of them in a whole range of different colors. We must point out though that this isn't an Apple unit of the iPhone 5c, but one of the units that the accessory manufacturers have constructed themselves as their own interpretation.

Given the source, a company that outed the iPhone 5 here a year ago, we're pretty confident this is the real deal.

First, the device. We've seen a bunch of leaks in recent weeks and months suggesting what the iPhone 5c will look like, and as you can see from these images, they're pretty much spot on. The device is essentially the same size as the existing iPhone 5, and all the ones we've seen have a white front. The color differences are round back, as we've previously heard, and we've seen the iPhone 5c in white, blue, yellow and pink here. The colors are actually pretty nice, the yellow is quite bright, but the blue in particular looks really nice up close.

The actual device does differ from the iPhone 5 — and the expected iPhone 5s — the most obvious being round the back. The much-rumored plastic shell is here in all its glory, and while it does look glossy, we'd put it in the realms of the iPhone 3G and 3GS in terms of finish.

iPhone 5c

Down bottom, there are only 4 holes for the speaker in a single line, Lightning port in the center, and the microphone and the headphone jack to the other side. The design is noticeably different, and the plastic shell also extends around the sides, top and bottom of the phone.

The buttons on the side are same in arrangement as the current iPhone 5, but different in style. The iPhone 5c buttons aren't round, but more a rectangular shape, and they appear to be color matched to the color of the shell. The mute switch is still pretty much the same in design, and the SIM card slot is still on the right hand side of the phone. Up top, power button remains the same as on the iPhone 5 as well.

As we've already stated, this isn't a working unit from Apple. But, the source of these units is one of the worlds largest case manufacturers, and they also have a ton of iPhone 5c cases here in Germany as well. So, we're confident.

Apple is going to unveil the iPhone 5c this coming Tuesday, September 10 at an event in California, so we'll see the finished article only then. For the absolute best in iPhone 5c and 5S coverage, keep it locked to iMore. For more of the iPhone 5c, check out the gallery and video below.

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Richard Devine

Senior Editor at iMore, part time racing driver, full time British guy

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Reader comments

The iPhone 5C: A look at a case-maker's dummy unit


Isn't it likely these units match the leaks perfectly because the pictures in the leaks are actually pictures of these manufacturers prototypes?

That would explain the leaked photos over history, including clear photos that didn't prove to be spot on

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I'm confident this case maker has this pretty much nailed on. They showed us the iPhone 5 last year at the same event which was an absolute perfect match for the actual product Apple unveiled.

Yikes. The source looks great but the phone? Ehhhhhh....

I get that I'm not supposed to view it the way I would the 5 or 4S but wow. I hope the real one looks nicer than that.

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I realise case-makers pretty much *have* to be optimistic, but why would anyone buy a plastic case for their plastic phone?

The number of people wanting or buying cases for iPhone 5c (or 5s for that matter) is clearly going to drop precipitously. There are always a few stupids, (like those that buy "scratch protection films" for their un-scratchable gorilla glass iPhone screens), but by the time the year is out most folks will have realised they don't need or want a case for their phone.

a plastic phone body doesn't help with protecting the screen from damage. As for being optimistic, these are the guys who sell a plastic case for a metal phone (the definition of lunacy)

and yes, that phone is fugly.

I can assure you that the gorilla glass on my iPhone 5 is scratchable.. And I'm not talking about taking a key to it to intentionally try and scratch the glass. Things that accidentally get put in the same pocket, etc -- have taken their toll on the screen on mine.

It's a very rare key that can even make a mark on gorilla glass. 99.9% of all keys are made from brass which is significantly *softer* than the glass and cannot by definition scratch it at all.

The only common things that can scratch gorilla glass are steel and quartz (sand). Only an idiot "protects" gorilla glass (one of the hardest substances there is) with a soft plastic cover (which can be scratched by almost anything).

I'm one of the MANY stupids who has bought "scratch protection films" for my "un-scratchable gorilla glass" because, from experience, Gorilla Glass DOES scratch, believe it or not! Just keeping the phone in one's pocket with keys and spare change will eventually lead to some scratches. Please do a little research and not take claims such as "un-scratchable" to heart before making such ignorant comments :)

Dude, I've owned each and every model and even dropped them a few times and while the metal has dinged occasionally (you know from dropping it on freaking concrete) the glass has never got the slightest scratch. I've never even seen an iPhone with scratched glass and I see dozens of iPhones a week in my office. So actually I *do* know what I'm talking about.

Look it up on wikipedia. Scratches are rare. There are only a few common items that are harder than gorilla glass. These are facts.

There isn't one key in ten thousand that has steel in it and is therefore capable of scratching gorilla glass. Soft things like brass keys simply cannot scratch hard things like gorilla glass. Besides which, what kind of an idiot puts their super expensive phone in the same pocket as their keys anyway?

Putting a 15 cent plastic sticker on a super expensive, super-hard gorilla glass screen is just an unnecessary, foolish thing to do. Simply taking a moderate amount of care with the phone is all that's necessary to keep it scratch free forever.

Makes me think that the 5C has more or less the same internal component layout as the current 5. And it might also contain many of the 5's components as well. The bottom-side ports, the rear camera + mic + flash, etc. are all exactly in the same spots.

So maybe Apple's strategy is to use their iPhone components and circuit boards for 2 years. First year in the high-end iPhone, second year in the low-end iPhone. And there would of course be an updated or all-new high-end model every year.

To make me get this phone: internal specs of the iPhone 5, the right color (nothing flashy or glittery like I've seen), and a robust build that doesn't creak or crack easily. Otherwise, it's just going to be upgrading to the iPhone 5 for me.

Is iMore really playing a freaking video or podcast on each tab? Seriously? Whatever happened to user experience being a strong belief among Apple fans??? Yep, what was once the only Apple site I paid attention to outside DF and Loopinsight is now deleted from the bookmark section in my mind. Peace.