Apple iPhone 5s Review

By on October 18, 2013, 1:17 AM

As an incremental update, the flagship 5s borrows heavily from its predecessor which in theory would encourage many to play the waiting game for one more year to see what sort of new design Cupertino comes up with for the iPhone 6.

You wouldn’t know it’s an incremental update based on early sales figures, however. Apple managed to move more than nine million iPhones during launch weekend a few weeks ago and early reports suggest the 5s was the top-selling phone at all four major US carriers in September. That said, there is some new technology inside the 5s that is partly responsible for its early success, namely the all-new 64-bit A7 processor and the Touch ID fingerprint reader built into the phone's Home button.

Read the complete review.




User Comments: 19

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Guest said:

Pros: Built upon iPhone 5's solid hardware foundation, the 5s adds next-gen processing chops and a totally usable fingerprint reader. iOS 7 brings Apple up to par with Android, and you get access to what's arguably still the better ecosystem.

Cons: Not enough to warrant an upgrade for current iPhone 5 users. Android flagships are just as good as the iPhone these days.

Did not expect that conclusion...

Guest said:

I did to be honest. There was a time when the iPhone was fairly untouchable, certainly in the first couple of years but things have definitely changed. I used to have iPhones a few years back, and am stuck with an iPhone 4 as my work phone.. but my phone of choice is a Nexus 4 currently - almost 1/3 of the price of a current iPhone, and just absolutely brilliant.

Arris Arris said:

I did to be honest. There was a time when the iPhone was fairly untouchable, certainly in the first couple of years but things have definitely changed. I used to have iPhones a few years back, and am stuck with an iPhone 4 as my work phone.. but my phone of choice is a Nexus 4 currently - almost 1/3 of the price of a current iPhone, and just absolutely brilliant.

Only ever had an iPod and never an iPhone but have used them and tried other peoples. Nothing special in todays market. Love my Nexus 4 too.

1 person liked this | fredderf81 said:

Honestly I dont understand a lot of iphone reviews. its a nice toy to play a few games on and thats about it. the 64-bit processor is a gimmick to get sheep to buy it. there are no 64 bit apps out there...probably wont be for quick awhile. one would need more than 1gb of ram to accurately take advantage of it as well. I also do not understand why so many reviews take so much consideration of the cameras in phones. I understand the majority of people use the camera. people who are relying on a phone camera to store their memories are ******. if you really want a nice photo just bring a camera!! ios 7 looks AND feels like a cheap knock off of android. its cartoon like and childish. as far as the "secure" fingerprint reader....history will show you that the words "secure" and "apple" typically don't mesh well together. half the people in the office have an iphone and half the people have android phones....so why are the iphone users never able to do field work on their phones like the android users can?? these phones STILL are, like they always have been, toys that are meant for children to play with and techno-phobes who are afraid to touch anything technical in the least. I have used apple stuff, I used to own apple stuff, I quickly found out all of it is a waste of money. now, take ANY product they offer and knock off about $200 ... then I would agree with most of the reviews. ... of course I guess then they would have to hire more ... "unpaid interns" to work 5-6 12 hour days for free.

slamscaper slamscaper said:

The hardware is impressive in the iPhone 5s and the build quality is excellent indeed, which is very typical of all the previous versions of the iPhone.

That said, as time goes on the top Android smartphones are really starting to show their superiority over the iPhone, in just about every aspect (save for build quality). Power users can do so much more with a quality Android handset, as the hardware is so much more capable. On top of that, the displays on Android handsets are simply much better suited for multi-media tasks.

Additionally, most power users don't fancy the fact that Apple locks their devices down so heavily. You can't even copy over DRM free music to the iPhone by default, while most Android handsets don't even have to be rooted to install apps from untrusted sources, let alone play DRM free music.

Guest said:

GSMArena's blog has found that the 5s actually shoots 480p at 120 fps and then upscales the results to 720p. It's called faux-hd slo-mo recording

Guest said:

Where are the fanboys, now that Apple really needs them to shout down the "there is no there there" critiques of the 5S?

Guest said:

My wife got a 5S for her birthday, and its difficult to tell any difference at all performance wise compared to my 5 because, as you said, the 4S on up is pretty damn snappy. She was coming from an iPhone 4 so it was a pretty significant improvement for her.

But I must say, the flash actually is pretty damn good. I was really impressed by the quality of the color with the new flash. It was good, and in the way that you couldn't tell the flash was even used kinda good. It still hurt my eyes though...

Guest said:

If you are not an iPhone fan to begin with, nothing about the 5S is a game changer for that (most likely). But as an upgrade for someone already considering an iOS device, it's a nice phone.

Recipe7 Recipe7 said:

My wife got her 5s, upgrading from a 4. It is a great upgrade from that generation, but nothing to consider if you have a 5 already.

I'm currently with a 4s, and looking to get the 6s. I need a bigger screen.

nazartp said:

Answering to a person who is confused by cameras in the phones obsession.

First of all, I am pretty serious about my photography. I have two pro-grade camera bodies and a good selection of pro-grade lenses. I log my camera with me all the time and I consider using camera in the phone, especially with built-in flash a choice weapon of revenge.

Having said that, I definitely see the reason why phone camera is one of relatively important features.

First, lots of people don't know any better and have no idea how to use a normal camera. File those with DSLRs in auto mode into this category.

Second, not everyone has determination to carry a camera with them all the time. Decent cameras are by far bulkier than a phone and super-compact ones are not much better in quality than a phone camera.

Third, we have phones on us most of the time. Ability to snap a quick picture without extra equipment definitely has its value. For example, I would not take my expensive camera on a fishing trip. By the end of the day my boat is usually wet and covered in fish scales, slime and blood. A phone in a watertight case fits the bill if I want to shoot a quick picture of my catch to someone.

mctommy said:

I understand the majority of people use the camera. people who are relying on a phone camera to store their memories are ******. if you really want a nice photo just bring a camera!!

You really need to wake up. Small cameras are a dying breed. Plus they are not that small and you don't have that in your pocket at all times.

JC713 JC713 said:

I really like the 5S design, but my 5 is more than enough.

Guest said:

iPhone 5s - the first smartphone to bring something USEFUL since iPhone 4 (hint: retina). Touch ID will be known as the first well working and well implemented fingerprint scanner ever. It will also change the way we pay for things.

Railman said:

I understand the majority of people use the camera. people who are relying on a phone camera to store their memories are ******. if you really want a nice photo just bring a camera!!

You really need to wake up. Small cameras are a dying breed. Plus they are not that small and you don't have that in your pocket at all times.

But there is no getting away from the fact that a camera with a decent lens beats a mobile phone even when a phone has more megapixels. Case in point is my camera with a 10x optical lens and only 4 megapixel sensor. It can take photos that my 8 megapixel phone can only dream of.

Staff
Julio Franco Julio Franco, TechSpot Editor, said:

FYI, we've added new benchmarks to the 5s review comparing it to other competing handsets. The Futuremark Peacekeeper result in particular looks promising (64-bit Safari?):

[link]

captaincranky captaincranky, TechSpot Addict, said:

I still want to know, when you get a poor signal with a pink iPhone5, if Apple will tell you, "You're fondling it wrong"?

Archean Archean, TechSpot Paladin, said:

@Julio

Still funny to see android lovers boasting about specs. Many still haven't gotten their head around the fact that architectural efficiency coupled with efficient OS will always trounce droids.

@JC

iPhone 5, nearly holds 2/3 of its original price (provided it is used with care and in v/good condition), whereas, my S3 after same period of time could barely get 1/3 of its original price, and this is true for all droids. So monetarily as well, iPhone seems to hold a better long term value.

@captain

Or may be it is just ...... umm gay?

captaincranky captaincranky, TechSpot Addict, said:

@captain

Or may be it is just ...... umm gay?

So then maybe Apple would tell you, "it's your own damned dumb fault for not buying a manly black one, they have better reception...!:p

But then alternatively, what bold fashion statement could possibly say more about you and your choice of lifestyle, than having a pink iPhone5 stuffed in your codpiece, as you mince you way toward ballet rehearsal.....

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