Geeks2U Promise
We guarantee you'll love our fast, friendly service - or we'll refund your money.  
133,572 Happy Customers & Counting
Need tech support?
1300 769 448
Extended hours, 7 days a week
Home  /  geekspeak  /  iPhone 5s: A mid-cycle replacement with plenty of power

iPhone 5s: A mid-cycle replacement with plenty of power

iphone-5s

Apple only releases one iPhone model a year — except when they release two, which is what they’ve just done with the iPhone 5s and iPhone 5c. The iPhone 5c is a colourful and plastic version of what is essentially last year’s iPhone 5, albeit with a marginally larger battery, but the attention getter is undeniably the iPhone 5s.

Apple’s managed to generate a lot of hype around its products for years, and some will decry that against the wider market of smartphone options open to you; everything from the excellent camera on the Nokia Lumia 1020 to the natty waterproof version of the Samsung Galaxy S4, the Galaxy S4 Active present themselves as entirely vaiable alternatives to the world of iOS. Yet people still queue up for the latest iPhone. Is the iPhone 5s really that special?

I’ve spent the past fortnight since attending the launch of the phones in Cupertino California running the iPhone 5s (and the 5c) through their paces, keen to see if Apple still had a premium product on its hands. The answer is that yes, they do — but within a certain framework. There’s no one “best” smartphone for anyone; information junkies will do slightly better with Windows Phone 8 or Blackberry handsets. Customisation fans will enjoy everything you can do with Android. That leaves Apple targeting the wider consumer audience who wants — and it’s a terrible cliché — a phone that “just works”.

That’s pretty much exactly what the iPhone 5s does. It comes in three tones — silver, space grey and the surprisingly popular gold — with the usual run of 16/32/64GB of storage; picking the right capacity is rather important as there’s no way to add any storage to an iPhone itself. Underneath a design that’s mostly identical to last year’s iPhone sits Apple’s brand new dual-core “A7” processor and 1GB of RAM. It’s a combination that doesn’t sound like much — for what it’s worth, Samsung sell a version of the S4 with an eight-core processor, albeit not in Australia — but in actual use it absolutely flies along, whether you’re using it for web browsing, email, games or anything inbetween. The camera remains an 8 megapixel model, but Apple’s borrowed a trick from the HTC One and its “ultrapixels”; the sensor sites on the 5s are 1.5 microns across, making them larger than on many competing phones. The results are startlingly good; I’ve collected a series of ad-hoc photos which you can peruse here pitting it against the exceptional camera on the Lumia 1020. The Lumia is still the better camera — but not by anywhere as much of a margin as you might suggest, and the iPhone 5s sits much easier in the pocket than Nokia’s gargantuan phone.

The interesting aspect here is that as an “S” series phone, the iPhone 5s should sit as a mid-year replacement prior to the iPhone 6, which — if the current crop of not always reliable rumours are to be believed — may well break out into a 5 inch or larger display screen. Apple’s usually only tinkered around the edges with its mid-cycle s iPhones — the 3GS and iPhone 4S — but the iPhone 5s is quite a bit more powerful than its predecessor.

So should you upgrade? If you’re already an iPhone 5 user, I’d say not, simply because that hardware is only twelve months old and should well and truly survive through to the next iPhone generation. If you’re using an older iPhone and want a little more power, then it’s a pretty easy recommendation — much more so than the not-that-much-cheaper iPhone 5c — but with contract prices for this generation of iPhones not being exactly cheap, it’d be wise to look around at what else you might get for the same kind of money.

FacebookTwitterGoogle+Share

Recent News

pc-clean

Most people, if given the choice, will try to skip out on doing the evening dishes, or for that matter even loading a dishwasher. It’s not exactly the most thrilling of chores to undertake, but if you don’t clean your dishes somehow, everything ends up dirty and unusable. It’s much the same story for your… More 

fb

Facebook is a service beloved by many, because it makes it so very easy to keep in touch with friends, family, acquaintances and more in an environment that’s generally easy to use and that can be quite fun. It’s one of the world’s busiest web sites, and one of the tech world’s most valuable companies…. More 

browsers

The chances are good that when you browse the web, you’re doing so via Google’s own particular browser, Google Chrome. Chrome has anywhere between 47% to 60% of the browser market sewn up. That might not seem that impressive, but the next largest market share is usually given to Apple’s Safari browser at between 13%… More 

mackeyboarda

Apple sells itself as a premium brand, both in style terms, but also for the quality of the computing equipment it sells. That’s a proposition that can very much become quasi-religious for some folks, although few would suggest that Apple sells bad computing equipment. Wherever you sit on that spectrum, there’s no doubting that consumers… More