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New cheapo iPhone ain't gonna be that cheap, says non-Foxconn CEO

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The CEO of a Chinese firm rumoured to be building an entry-level version of the iPhone has warned world+dog against calling it cheap.

Tong Zixian, chairman of Pegatron, told a shareholder meeting today that the new iPhone's "price is still high". According to a dodgy translation of Zixian's comments, the new phone offers "parity" with other manufacturers' models, which have increased in sophistication whilst maintaining a low price point.

Pegatron is widely tipped to be the manufacturer who will produce a cheaper - sorry, less expensive - version of the iPhone. This new model is expected to ditch the pricy metal casing of the current models in favour of more economical plastic shells, which may even come in different colours.

It is not yet known whether Pegatron will be the only manufacturer to produce the phone, or if Foxconn will take up some or all of the burden.

Rumours that Pegatron was the chosen iPhone builder were ignited after it announced plans to take on 40,000 workers, whilst also saying that much of the firm's revenue is expected to come in the second half of 2013.

Apple is reportedly planning a lower cost phone to target developing markets, such as Latin America, and the rapidly growing Chinese consumer market.

Most commentators agree that Apple will break its policy of releasing one smartmobe a year, instead releasing a new iteration of the main iPhone model by Q3 this year. Sources have speculated this could be called the iPhone 5S, or perhaps the iPhone Light. ®

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