Apple: iPhone 5 in stores Sept. 21

By: MICHAEL LIEDTKE, AP Technology Writers
By: MICHAEL LIEDTKE, AP Technology Writers

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Apple says the new iPhone 5 will be in stores in the U.S. and several other countries on Sept. 21.

The other launch countries are Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore and the UK.

A week later, the phone will be available in 22 more countries, including Italy, Poland and Spain.

In the U.S., pre-orders will start on Friday, Sept. 14.

The phone is thinner and ligher than the iPhone 4S, yet has a taller screen.

The phone will cost the same as the iPhone 4S did when it debuted, starting at $199 with a two-year contract in the U.S. Meanwhile, the price for the iPhone 4S will drop to $99 for new contract signers, and the iPhone 4 will be free.

Apple Inc. says it's thinner and lighter than the previous model, even though it has a bigger screen.

The screen is taller than on the iPhone 4S, as expected, making room for another row of icons.

It will also come with the capability to connect to the fastest new wireless data networks, both in the U.S. and overseas. That's another feature that was widely expected. Some competing phones in the U.S. have had this ability for a year and an half.

With the new model, Apple is ditching the connection port it's used for iPods, iPhones and iPads for nearly a decade in favor of a smaller, narrower one. That means Apple is still the holdout in an industry where other manufacturers have settled on a standard connector for charging and computer backups.

There will be adapters available so that the new phone will be able to connect to sound docks and other accessories designed for the old phones.

Thanks to new technology that eliminates a separate touch-sensing layer in the screen, the phone is 18 percent thinner and 20 percent lighter, said Apple marketing head Phil Schiller. He spoke at an Apple event in San Francisco.

The camera on the back of the iPhone 5 has the same resolution as the one on the iPhone 4S, but takes pictures faster and works better in low light, Apple said.

The front-facing camera is getting an upgrade to high-definition, letting users take advantage of the faster data networks for videoconferencing.

Apple share are up $4.42, or 0.7 percent to $665.01 in afternoon trading.

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Peter Svensson contributed from New York.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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