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iPhone 5S review

Faster, new camera and a clever fingerprint reader. But is it enough of an upgrade?

Our Verdict

The best iPhone yet, featuring a great camera and the TouchID fingerprint sensor. The high price will put many off, but you'll find a lot of joy in this phone whether you're an iPhone fan or if you've been sitting on the fence. It's more than just an iterative update.

Product features

  • Built-in Memory : 64 GB
  • Rear Camera Resolution : 8 Megapixel
  • Battery Talk Time : 10 Hour
  • Screen Resolution : 1136 x 640
  • Processor Core : Dual-core (2 Core)

View full specification

For

  • Powerful core
  • Touch ID is a real step up
  • Excellent camera

Against

  • Expensive
  • No screen tech change
  • Battery suspect

Video on the iPhone 5S isn't anything overly special beyond offering decent footage without having to try very hard. Like the camera there's no optical image stabilisation on board, which means that anything that comes with a shaky hand will have the same judder in the footage.

iPhone 5S review

This is especially apparent when zooming in on the footage when you're filming, which can now be done at the same time.

However, the general clarity and smoothness of the video is impressive and will help you capture the precious moments in high clarity. The only other real option is to turn the LED light on to get some real illumination, but be warned: it's bright.

Slo-mo

Another trick enabled by the A7 chip, slow motion has been added to the iPhone 5S. It enables 120fps capture at 720p resolution, but more importantly you can choose when in the footage to speed up and slow down the action, so if you've got a squirrel falling from the tree you can make it so that only the really hilarious bit is at the slower speed.

iPhone 5S review

It's a really neat system for editing your footage, with little tabs to trim the movie to get rid of any waiting around at the start or the end.

iPhone 5S review

While the effect is cool, it's not something I'm particularly bothered about in terms of a killer feature on a smartphone. The results are fun and pleasing, but they don't really make me want to pull out Slow-mo mode all the time.

On top of that it's very hard to share the slow motion video, as you can't just pull it off the phone, with the resulting .MOV file jumping and skipping somewhat when viewed back on a PC.

So while I like the idea, Slo-Mo left us feeling rather cold.

Tech Specs

Product TypeSmartphone
Network BandQuad Band
Input MethodTouchscreen
TouchscreenYes
BluetoothYes
Wireless LANYes
USBNo
Contract TypeSIM-free
Built-in Memory64 GB
Built-in FlashYes
Memory Card SlotNo
Cellular Data Connectivity TechnologyGPRS, EDGE, HSDPA, HSUPA, UMTS, HSPA+
GPS ReceiverYes
Multi-SIM SupportedNo
Near Field CommunicationNo
Integrated TV TunerNo
Product FamilyiPhone 5s
Cellular Generation4G
Cellular Network SupportedGSM 850, GSM 900, GSM 1800, GSM 1900, WCDMA 850, WCDMA 900, WCDMA 1700, WCDMA 1900, WCDMA 2100
Multi-touch ScreenYes
Rear Camera Resolution8 Megapixel
Number of SIM Card Supported1
Front CameraYes
Phone StyleBar
ColourSilver
Operating SystemiOS
Brand NameApple
Battery Talk Time10 Hour
Screen Size10.2 cm (4")
Screen Resolution1136 x 640
Touchscreen TypeCapacitive
Weight (Approximate)112 g
Processor CoreDual-core (2 Core)
Maximum Video Resolution1920 x 1080
Processor ManufacturerApple
Wireless LAN StandardIEEE 802.11a/b/g/n
Backlight TechnologyLED
Operating System VersioniOS 7
Messaging TypeSMS (Short Message Service), MMS (Multi-media Messaging Service), Email, iMessage
RealtoneYes
Call FeaturesCall Log
Pixel Density326 ppi
Height123.7 mm
Width58.7 mm
Depth7.6 mm
Radio TunerNo
ManufacturerApple, Inc
Product NameiPhone 5s Smartphone
Processor Speed1.70 GHz
Product LineiPhone 5s
Screen TypeLCD
Sensor TypeAccelerometer, Gyro Sensor, Proximity Sensor, Digital Compass, Fingerprint Sensor, Ambient Light Sensor
Manufacturer Part NumberMF359X/A
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.apple.com/uk
Marketing Information

Unrealized until now. Indispensable from now on.

A chip with 64-bit architecture. A fingerprint identity sensor. A better, faster camera. And an operating system built specifically for 64-bit. Any one of these features in a smartphone would make it ahead of its time. All of these features in a smartphone make it an iPhone that's definitely ahead of its time.

The gold standard. Also available in silver and gray.

iPhone 5s is precision crafted down to the micron. And it's evident throughout. The beautiful aluminum housing. The sleekness of metal and glass. Sapphire crystal in the Home button. And more sapphire crystal protecting the iSight camera. Design and construction of this level is unmatched. As a result, iPhone 5s looks and feels unbelievably thin and light. And it's available in three elegant expressions: gold, silver, and space gray.

Package Contents
  • iPhone 5s Smartphone
  • EarPods with Remote and Mic
  • Lightning to USB Cable
  • 5W USB Power Adapter
Limited Warranty1 Year