Apple Adds More Market Competition with 8GB iPhone 5C [Updated]

True to Monday's reports, Apple launched an 8GB version of the iPhone 5C Tuesday morning. It's available in the E.U. and U.K right now, and will presumably show up on Apple's U.S. website later this morning.

Apple adds 8GB model to iPhone 5C lineupApple adds 8GB model to iPhone 5C lineup

The 8GB iPhone 5C will cost UK customers £429, which is £40 less than the 16GB model. Since the 8GB model is £40 less than the 16GB version, or US$66.40, it's likely pricing in the United States will come in $60 less for the new model.

The 8GB model rolled out without any fanfare, and the only difference shoppers will see is the lower storage capacity. It includes the same specs as the rest of the iPhone 5C lineup, including the full range of plastic back covers.

Apple isn't saying why it added a lower capacity iPhone model to the 5C lineup, although it doesn't take much to assume the 16GB and 32GB models weren't living up to the company's expectations. The 8GB model's lower price point could help draw in shoppers that were on the fence.

A £40 or $60 difference isn't much, but it may get buyers over the psychological price hurdle so they'll break out their credit cards. For shoppers that weren't biting, they may have opted for the free iPhone 4S, which still keeps them in Apple's camp. 

This may also be a ploy to help draw in smartphone buyers that want an iPhone, but go with Android instead simply on cost. If so, the lower price point may help keep some of those customers, but it'll be easy for retailers to convince buyers they'll get more for their money at that price point by going with Android.

Update: There's a reason why you aren't seeing the 8GB iPhone 5C on Apple's site in the United States, and that's because it isn't coming here. Apple PR said the i8GB model will be available only in the UK, France, Germany, Australia, and China. Thanks to Philip Emer-DeWitt at Fortune for uncovering that little tidbit.