Apple takes the wraps off its ruby red ‘iPhone (RED)’

Apple’s brought a new iPhone color to the fore: Ruby red. The new iPhone (Red)’s meant to bring attention to the ongoing HIV/AIDS crises — a percentage of every purchase goes toward fighting the disease worldwide.
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Why it matters to you

Apple has long contributed to the fight against HIV/AIDS, and the new iPhone (Red) is a continuation of that trend.

Move over, jet black. Red is the iPhone’s hot new color.

On Tuesday, in partnership with nonprofit Project (RED), Apple added a brand-new bright ruby red iPhone model to its roster: The iPhone (RED). Like the company’s (RED) iPod Nano, (RED) Beats headphones, and (RED) Smart Battery cases, the launch is intended to promote Project (RED)’s ongoing effort to combat HIV and AIDS, which remains one of the globe’s worst health problems. More than 35 million people have died of the virus, and 37 million are infected each year, according to Project (RED).

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As with Apple’s other Project (RED)-branded devices, a portion of every iPhone (RED) sale will be donated to The Global Fund, a charitable organization that finances HIV/AIDS grants to roughly half a dozen countries in sub-Saharan Africa. “This is the biggest day in our 10-year partnership, (RED) CEO Deb Dugan told Mashable. “[We’ve] seen from the time we’ve begun with Apple that more than 18 million people have effective treatment. Having Apple make this very big statement, it takes our breath away.”

It’s another notch in Apple’s belt in its fight against the disease. The iPhone maker has made a tradition of marking World AIDS Day with a campaign to donate to Project (RED), and in 2012, it teamed up with Starbucks to offer a special iTunes eBasket that saw 5 percent of  proceeds donated to The Global Fund.

The iPhone 7 and 7 Plus Special Edition (RED) will ship starting Friday. Every model is constructed from brushed aluminum and features a bright red back, white front, and silver Apple logo. The design is the only difference between the Project (RED) phones and the current iPhone 7 and 7 Plus devices  — functionally speaking, they’re the same.

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Here’s how the pricing breaks down:

  • iPhone 7 128 GB:  $749
  • iPhone 7 256 GB: $849
  • iPhone 7 Plus 128 GB: $869
  • iPhone 7 256 GB: $969

Apple said the percentage of each sale that goes to Project (RED) varies by channel, but historically, the iPhone maker’ has been one of the charity’s biggest contributors. It has donated $130 million to the cause thus far — an amount that’s more than many countries have contributed, according to Dugan.

The new iPhones will become available starting March 24 in Apple’s online and brick-and-mortar stores. Apple will try to inform potential buyers about Project (RED)’s mission through posters, pamphlets, and other promotional materials, Apple VP of Marketing Greg Joswiak told Mashable.

“It’s a nice recognition of our partnership with the (RED) team in fighting HIV and AIDS, Joswiak said.

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