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iPhone 5S review

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

Apple has used the same Retina display as found in the iPhone 5 and iPhone 5C, in the new flagship model. It's a four-inch screen, and comes with a resolution of 1136 x 640, making it still-sharp at 326DPI.

It's difficult to recommend the display compared to the rest of the smartphone world, as there are definitely better screens out there. The iPhone 6 and the iPhone 6 Plus offer higher resolutions, and larger displays, and the Plus boasts a higher PPI. Whether this is enough for you with the competition being so far ahead is something I'll leave you to work out.

The four-inch size of the screen is good enough though, as while I might be a fan of the larger screen for movies and internet browsing on the Samsung Galaxy S5 or HTC One M8, the iPhone 5S is a good phone for people that hate the idea of being forced to live with a bigger screen they don't want.

It's not perfect though, as despite what Apple would have you believe, the screen is just a tad too large to operate easily with one hand.

iPhone 5S review

With a small amount of shifting you can get the thumb all the way across, but given you have to jiggle the phone in the palm a little bit to do so, it kind of feels redundant.

In terms of the clarity of the iPhone 5S' display, I'd say it's excellent in terms of colour reproduction and general effect, but there are better displays too choose from - the Sony Xperia Z2 is worth looking at, for example.

Many people will be upgrading to the iPhone 5S from the 4S, and this is one of the few areas where, extended size aside, they won't see a large amount of difference.

iPhone 5S review

The sharpness is great, the colour reproduction still industry leading, but the brightness can be a little erratic for some low-contrast movies and isn't big enough for speedy typing. HD movies still look acceptable on the device, but I've seen a much more jaw-dropping effect on rival devices, such as the LG G3.

I like that Apple is leading the charge to stop screen sizes going too far in the wrong direction, but there could be something more that's done here.

iPhone 5S review

Even a display with a thinner bezel would have impressed (although scaling apps might have been a problem, with is something Apple is so proud of) but I still think in the face of fierce Android opposition the iPhone 5S display could be better.

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
Bluetooth StandardBluetooth 4.0
Backlight TechnologyLED
Operating System VersioniOS 7
Messaging TypeSMS (Short Message Service), MMS (Multi-media Messaging Service), Email, iMessage
Pixel Density326 ppi
Front Camera Resolution1.2 Megapixel
Height123.7 mm
Width58.7 mm
Depth7.6 mm
Radio TunerNo
Battery Standby Time250 Hour
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