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8GB version of iPhone 5c now seen in some markets

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Apple's iPhone 5c hasn't exactly set the world on fire, sales-wise, but that could change with the introduction of an 8GB lower-end model. 9to5Mac reported Tuesday that -- at least in five markets -- a downsized iPhone 5c model has appeared on Apple sites.

For now, the 8GB model appears limited to the U.K., France, Germany, Australia, and China. The U.S. Apple store continues to show only the 16GB and 32GB models of Apple's colorful smartphone. In the U.S., the 16GB device sells for $99 on contract and $549 off-contract. In the U.K., the device is priced at £429 unlocked, which is a difference of £40 from the price of the 16 GB version.

The iPhone 4S is still available, for £349. However, the new 5c -- basically the older iPhone 5 in a colorful case -- is Apple's least expensive 4G LTE phone. It also sports a Lightning connector; the iPhone 4S, with the demise of the iPad 2, is the only iDevice still sporting the old 30-pin dock connector.

While this has led to speculation that the iPhone 4S is on its last legs, the fact that this new 5c seems destined only for European and Asian markets -- at least for now -- may mean that the 4S has time left.

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