iPhone 5c: Usability & Sales 2024

iPhone 5c: A Look at Its Usability and Sales Performance in 2024


This year marks the 10th anniversary of the iPhone 5c, which was launched back in 2013. Positioned as a more affordable alternative to the high-end iPhone 5s, the iPhone 5c didn't quite hit the mark in sales, managing to sell only around 24 million units compared to the staggering 164 million units of the iPhone 5s. The iPhone 5c's design and pricing were at the heart of much debate, contributing to its relatively poor sales figures. Despite its vibrant, playful plastic exterior, the price difference of just 367.28 AED less than the more advanced iPhone 5s wasn't enough to entice a significant number of consumers. However, as we look back in 2024, it's interesting to reassess the iPhone 5c, particularly its functionality and relevance in the current tech world. While its design might appear somewhat retro now, features like its ease of one-handed use and portability are still noteworthy. This section aims to delve deeper into the history and enduring relevance of the iPhone 5c in our technological landscape.

Design and Build Quality

The iPhone 5c distinguished itself from its contemporaries through its distinctive design and build quality. Its plastic casing, available in various vibrant colors, gave it a playful, youthful look. This choice, however, influenced its market performance, as many consumers hesitated to choose the 5c over the more advanced iPhone 5s, especially given the small price difference. The plastic construction was perceived as less luxurious compared to the 5s's more premium materials.

In terms of handling, the iPhone 5c's glossy plastic was more prone to fingerprints but offered better grip compared to other models. This texture was a matter of personal preference, with some users enjoying the unique feel, while others missed the classic elegance of glass and metal.

The device was somewhat bulky, with notably large bezels, especially when compared to modern smartphones that typically feature larger screens and slimmer frames. The 4-inch screen of the 5c, once considered adequate, now seems small and less user-friendly. However, this size does allow for comfortable one-handed operation. The prominent bezels and the lack of Touch ID, requiring manual passcode entry, are features that seem outdated in current times.

In summary, while the iPhone 5c's design and build were distinct and vibrant, they didn't quite resonate in terms of delivering a premium feel or incorporating modern design trends. Although its design may not align with current preferences, its compact size and ease of one-handed use continue to make it a viable option for those who favor smaller phones.


The iPhone 5c, released in 2013, sports a 4-inch LCD screen. This size was typical for the era and is particularly suitable for one-handed use, although it now seems small relative to contemporary larger displays. The screen's resolution is 1136 x 640, equating to a pixel density of 326 ppi. As a result, at a typical viewing distance, individual pixels are indiscernible, ensuring that images and text are crisp and clear.

However, the iPhone 5c's display has some drawbacks, particularly for media consumption. Its smaller size, combined with substantial bezels, can make activities like watching videos or reading less comfortable, as the available screen space is limited. Additionally, the screen's brightness is relatively low, which can be problematic in brightly lit outdoor settings.

Notably, the iPhone 5c utilizes an LCD rather than the OLED technology found in newer iPhone models. Consequently, it doesn't achieve the same deep black levels as OLED screens. Also, it lacks a high refresh rate, meaning the display doesn't feel as smooth or responsive as those found in more recent smartphones.

In summary, while the display of the iPhone 5c is competent, offering clear and color-accurate imagery, it does have limitations. These include its relatively small size, modest brightness, and the absence of features like high refresh rates, which are now common in newer devices.

Camera Performance

The camera capabilities of the iPhone 5c, launched in 2013, reveal a marked difference from today's smartphone standards. It features an 8-megapixel primary camera and a 1.2-megapixel front-facing camera. Although these specifications were impressive at the time of its release, they don't measure up to the more advanced technology in recent smartphones.

A critical aspect to consider is the image quality produced by the iPhone 5c's cameras. Users often find that both the rear and front cameras yield images that are somewhat grainy and blurred. The absence of image stabilization technology further aggravates this issue, leading to challenges in capturing crisp and clear photographs.

A significant limitation of the iPhone 5c's camera is the lack of contemporary features such as a portrait mode. This feature, which creates a blurred background to highlight the subject, is missing in the 5c. Furthermore, the absence of image stabilization makes it tough to take steady, sharp shots, especially in motion.

In comparison to the latest smartphones, the iPhone 5c's camera performance is noticeably inferior. Modern smartphones boast higher megapixel cameras, sophisticated image processing techniques, and features like portrait mode and advanced stabilization. Therefore, in terms of image quality and camera functionality, the iPhone 5c falls short when stacked against current smartphone technology.

Performance and Software

The iPhone 5c, released in 2013, was once a top-of-the-line device with its Apple A6 chipset and 1GB of RAM. However, as we look back from the perspective of 2024, these specs fall short of current standards. Users nowadays find the iPhone 5c's performance, including its app loading times and interface responsiveness, to be disappointingly slow.

A significant issue with the iPhone 5c is its lack of software updates. The last update it received was in late 2017, leaving it permanently on iOS 10. This outdated software leads to compatibility issues with many apps. For instance, some apps no longer work on the device, while others, even if functioning, miss out on recent features and improvements.

The repercussions of this sluggish performance and outdated software are profound. Popular apps like YouTube can no longer be opened on the iPhone 5c, and while apps like Instagram might still run, they do so with reduced functionality and stability. This results in a user experience that is far from satisfactory, making the iPhone 5c a less desirable option for everyday use.

Moreover, the situation is likely to worsen as the device ages further. The combination of incompatible apps and inadequate hardware renders the iPhone 5c an impractical choice for a primary smartphone in 2024. For a better, smoother user experience, it's advisable to consider more contemporary smartphones that are still receiving support and updates.

Battery Life

The iPhone 5c comes with a 1510mAh battery, which might seem modest by today's smartphone standards. One key factor to remember is how battery life deteriorates over time. As a battery ages, its ability to hold a charge decreases, leading to reduced usage time.

This smaller and potentially degraded battery in the iPhone 5c means it might need more frequent charging compared to newer models. Depending on how it's used, the battery life of the iPhone 5c could vary greatly, ranging from as little as 30 minutes to about two hours.

When compared with contemporary smartphones, the iPhone 5c's battery performance is noticeably weaker. Modern advancements in battery technology have led to larger capacity batteries in newer smartphones, offering much longer usage times before requiring a recharge.

For those considering the iPhone 5c in 2024, it's crucial to factor in its limited battery capacity. Expect to keep a charger handy more often, or you might want to explore other smartphones that offer better battery life for a more seamless experience.


To sum up, the iPhone 5c's relevance and functionality in 2024 are notably hindered by its dated features and limited practicality. Although its compact size might appeal to those who favor smaller devices, its overall design and build quality are noticeably inferior compared to more recent iPhone models. The 4-inch LCD display is crisp and vibrant, but its size, brightness, and absence of a high refresh rate present challenges for comfortable content viewing. The camera quality, encompassing both rear and front cameras, is subpar when compared to contemporary smartphones, yielding grainy, unclear images and lacking advanced features such as portrait mode.

Moreover, the performance and software experience of the iPhone 5c are markedly sluggish and exasperating. Its inability to receive updates and support for numerous popular apps further detracts from its usability. This leads to a frustrating user experience and positions the iPhone 5c as an unsuitable choice for everyday use. Additionally, its battery life is inadequate, necessitating more frequent charging relative to newer smartphones.

Given these shortcomings, purchasing an iPhone 5c in 2024 is not recommended. While it may possess some nostalgic charm and distinctive design aspects, there are more advantageous alternatives available at similar price points, offering up-to-date features and a more seamless user experience. The iPhone 5c, despite its unique place in Apple's history and the debates it sparked, offers limited practicality in the current technological landscape.


1. Is the iPhone 5c still a good purchase in 2024?

In 2024, the iPhone 5c isn't the best choice for a smartphone. Its capabilities are now quite limited, and it doesn't offer the best user experience. There are other smartphones in the same price bracket that provide more up-to-date features and a smoother overall experience.

2. Can the iPhone 5c handle the latest apps?

The iPhone 5c is no longer compatible with the newest apps. It hasn't received software updates since late 2017 and is permanently on iOS 10. Consequently, many current apps won't work on it, and those that do may not have the latest features and enhancements.

3. How does the iPhone 5c stack up against current budget smartphones?

When compared to current budget smartphones, the iPhone 5c doesn't measure up well. Its design and build quality are not as impressive, its screen is smaller and less bright, the camera quality is inferior, and the device's overall performance and software feel outdated and inefficient. Modern budget smartphones offer better features, performance, and more current software.

4. What are some alternative options for a similar-priced backup phone?

For those looking for a backup phone in a similar price range, there are several alternatives. Budget-friendly models from brands like Xiaomi, Motorola, and Samsung are worth considering. These smartphones generally provide better performance, more contemporary features, and more current software compared to the iPhone 5c.

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