updated 09:56 pm EDT, Thu September 13, 2012
Starts at $649, won't be available for US pre-order
Apple's website has now listed the pricing for an unlocked iPhone 5, but has not yet announced a date for US availability. All three sizes of iPhone 5 will be available to be purchased outright, which gives users the freedom to use them internationally as well as sign up for prepaid service rather than obligating them to contracts. Canadian buyers will be able to pre-order the full-price model, but will pay $50 more for the device -- despite the fact that the Canadian dollar is roughly at par with US currency.
The US prices for the iPhone 5 are $649, $749 and $849 for the 16GB, 32GB and 64GB models respectively. Canadian pricing is set at $699, $799 and $899. An Apple representative told TechCrunch that the unlocked version of iPhone 5 won't be available in the US for several weeks, repeating a pattern seen with the iPhone 4S last year. The delay is probably a concession to carriers, which want to tap into pent-up demand as well as customers upgrading from their now-expiring iPhone 4 contracts. Several US retailers are offering prompt availability or small discounts to encourage new and returning customers to sign or renew contracts.
The iPhone 5 is the first model to use the new standard "nano-SIM" technology and thus isn't compatible with the micro-SIM used by the iPhone 4S. The GSM version offers DC-HSPA for the first time, while the CDMA version features both EVDO rev. A and B. As mentioned during the keynote, the iPhone 5 also expands its 802.11n compatibility by offering it on both 2.4GHz and 5GHz bandwidths, and now offers the ability to use FaceTime over cellular networks as well as Wi-Fi.