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Creeson By Creeson Agecoutay

With two million ordered on the first day it was available (Sept. 14), the iPhone 5 is beginning to be the next must-have gadget.


Local Regina consumers considering buying the next Apple phone wonder when the phones will be in Saskatchewan – and the answer depends on who you talk to.


The iPhone 5 will be available in Canada at Apple stores and online on Sept. 21. In Saskatchewan, SaskTel has been answering the question on their Facebook page and are slating the arrival for the end of the month.


“All we can say is that it will be out September 28 and it is an exciting time for our customers,” said Michelle Englot, SaskTel director of external communications. Englot said there is a strong demand for the iPhone 5 but as for cost, SaskTel is still crunching the numbers, “We are still working out the details and any information you need is on our website,” she said. 


On the Rogers website, iPhone 5’s release date is described as “coming soon” but the company does have the price listed. With a three-year plan, Rogers’ starting price is $179 for the 16GB model. The price rises with the more memory you want, with $279 for the 32GB and $379 for the 64GB phone. Without a Rogers contract the price is much higher, with models between $699 and $899.


With a much thinner and lighter model, a 4-inch retina display, a powerful A6 chip, 8-megapixel iSight camera with panorama, iOS6 and iCloud features, the iPhone 5 is definitely a step up from its predecessors. Apple has even kept the familiar Siri intelligent assistant and developed a new look and feel for the EarPods.


All of these features have kept second-year film production student Tim Merasty interested in buying. Merasty made the switch to the iPhone 4 last year and is excited about the iPhone 5.


“I love (the iPhone) and want to get it but I have to wait until my contract is up. There (are many) more features on the iPhone5, like the better camera, panorama and Siri.”


But Haidhem Zourrig, a marketing professor with the University of Regina, said many shoppers are cautious about plunking down cash for the latest gadget.


“In new technology products, when they start on the market, they start with high price and many consumers are very careful to buy the product and will wait for the price to decrease,” he said. “Some consumers are also very sensitive to the risk and many consumers are not really sure if a product will work in appropriate ways.”


At the same time, some shoppers are attracted to the status of a high-priced item, he said.


The iPhone 4 was released in June, 2010 with 600,000 sold during its first pre-order sale day.


Four months later, Apple released an upgraded version; the iPhone 4S which sold four million over the first three days of sales.

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