The Apple iPhone 5c ships in plastic box with a transparent top - the same style as the packages the iPod Touch players come in. The iPhone 5c lays in a plastic holder which needs to be detached before you can use it.
Below the smartphone are the usual set of accessories - the new Apple EarPods headset, a Lightning USB cable for charging and connectivity purposes, plus a wall charger. The paperwork includes two Apple stickers plus a SIM ejection tool.
The iPhone 5c has pretty much the same footprint as the iPhone 5 and 5s, but is 1.4mm thicker and 20 g heavier because of its new plastic casing. The phone definitely feels heavier than its 5-series siblings, though you'll probably won't notice the thicker profile because of its tapered edges.
Plastic is back at Apple. It's been gone since 2010 and the iPhone 4's all-glass shell, but it seems there is once again a place for plastic phones in Apple's lineup. The iPhone 5c back is made entirely of glossy plastic and is available in five different flavors - white, green, yellow, blue and pink.
The front is identical to the discontinued iPhone 5 and very similar to one on the iPhone 5s, with the exception of the Home key. Once again there is no official information on the screen's protective glass, but we believe Apple is still using Gorilla Glass as was the case with the previous generation of iPhones.
The iPhone 5c looks a lot like the fifth generation iPod Touch players, though it is thicker and made of plastic instead of metal. Unfortunately Apple has opted for glossy plastic and it is quite prone to fingerprints, smudges and scratches. On the bright side, thanks to the bright colors those prints won't be as noticeable as they used to be on the black iPhone 3G and 3GS.
The iPhone 5c provides a really awful grip due to its sloping edges, as well as the slippery glossy plastic the entire shell is made of. When you lay the 5c down flat, there is a very good chance it slips through your fingers once you try to lift it up.
So, while the glossy materials make for a very slippery shell, the build quality is where Apple would never compromise. The iPhone 5c has an excellent and great construction, with no creeks or squeaks whatsoever. The added weight also contributes to the solid feel.
Despite the different chassis compared to its predecessor, the controls are exactly where they were on the iPhone 5.
The front has the Home key below the display, while the earpiece and the FaceTime camera are above the Retina screen. The proximity and ambient light sensors are hidden near the FaceTime camera.
As usual, a double tap on the Home key launches the task manager, while a press and hold will start Siri.
On the left you get the usual three buttons: volume up, volume down and a Mute toggle. All three are made of plastic as well and the mute switch is still rather stiff, so accidental presses are highly unlikely.
On the right you find the tray, which pops open to reveal the nanoSIM slot. You can find the slightly different ejection tool (compared to the iPhone 5/5s one) within the paperwork in your iPhone 5c retail box.
The top of the iPhone 5c hosts the lonely plastic power/lock button.
The bottom of the iPhone 5c is really crowded. Here we find the 3.5mm audio jack, the microphone pinhole right next to it, the Lightning port for charging and connectivity, plus the loudspeaker grille which consists of four pinholes. The only two screws holding the plastic battery cover are on both sides of the Lightning port.
The 8MP camera lens, the secondary microphone for noise cancelation, and the single-LED flash are at the back. The camera is the same used on the iPhone 5, while the new and improved sensor with true-tone dual-LED flash are reserved for the flagship 5s model.