Apple last night unveiled its new flagship smartphone, the iPhone 5s, which looks almost the same as the 5, but with dramatically enhanced speed and new features like a fingerprint sensor and variable flash.
Apple last night announced the iPhone 5s, describing it as “the most forward-thinking iPhone yet””, echoing the 2012 launch of the iPhone 5, which was described by senior vice president of Worldwide Marketing Philip Schiller as “”the most beautiful consumer device that we’ve ever created””.
The announcement carried few surprises, with most features having been anticipated by the market. While the speed of the device was welcomed by many, many observers were disappointed that Apple had stuck to a 4″” screen at a time when most rivals were producing phones with bigger screens.
The 5s features a new A7 chip, making iPhone 5s the world’s first smartphone with 64-bit desktop-class architecture. Its stand-out features are an 8 megapixel iSight camera with True Tone flash and Touch ID, an innovative way to unlock your phone with just the touch of a finger.
iPhone 5s comes with iOS 7, the most significant iOS update since the original iPhone, integraqting new features like Control Center, Notification Center, improved Multitasking, AirDrop, enhanced Photos, Safari, Siri and iTunes Radio.
‚””iPhone 5s is the most forward-thinking smartphone in the world, delivering desktop class architecture in the palm of your hand,‚”” said Schiller. ‚””iPhone 5s sets a new standard for smartphones, packed into its beautiful and refined design are breakthrough features that really matter to people, like Touch ID, a simple and secure way to unlock your phone with just a touch of your finger.””
With up to twice the CPU and graphics performance, says Apple, almost everything you do on iPhone 5s is faster and better than ever, from launching apps and editing photos to playing graphic-intensive games‚Äîall while delivering better battery life. Apple also engineered iOS 7 and all the built-in apps to maximize the performance of the A7 chip.
Every iPhone 5s includes the new M7 motion coprocessor that gathers data from the accelerometer, gyroscope and compass to offload work from the A7 for improved power efficiency. Developers can also access new CoreMotion APIs that take advantage of M7, so they can create even better fitness and activity apps that go well beyond what other mobile devices offer. The M7 motion coprocessor continuously measures your motion data, even when the device is asleep, and saves battery life for pedometer or other fitness apps that use the accelerometer all day.
iPhone 5s introduces Touch ID, an innovative way to simply and securely unlock your iPhone. Built into the home button, Touch ID uses a laser cut sapphire crystal, together with the capacitive touch sensor, to take a high-resolution image of your fingerprint and intelligently analyze it to provide accurate readings from any angle.
The Touch ID sensor recognizes the touch of a finger so the sensor is only activated when needed, preserving battery life. All fingerprint information is encrypted and stored securely in the Secure Enclave inside the A7 chip on the iPhone 5s: it’s never stored on Apple servers or backed up to iCloud. Touch ID can also be used as a secure way to approve purchases from the iTunes Store, App Store or iBooks Store.
The 8 megapixel iSight camera features a larger f/2.2 aperture and a new, larger sensor with 1.5Œº pixels for better sensitivity and low-light performance, resulting in better pictures. These improvements, along with the Apple-designed image signal processor in the A7 chip and the new Camera app in iOS 7, provide up to two-times faster auto-focus, faster photo capture, automatic image and video stabilization, and better dynamic range.
iPhone 5s introduces the new True Tone flash‚Äîthe world’s first for any camera‚Äîthat variably adjusts color and intensity for over 1 000 combinations, so photos taken with a flash appear more natural. iPhone 5s also includes a new Burst Mode, Slo-Mo video with 120 fps, a new FaceTime HD camera for better low-light performance and audio-only FaceTime calls with iOS 7.
iPhone 5s features a thin and light, precision-crafted design that customers around the world love, including an anodized aluminum body with diamond cut chamfered edges, a 4″” Retina display and glass inlays. iPhone 5s is available in three metallic finishes, including gold, silver and Space Grey.
iPhone 5s supports up to 13 LTE wireless bands, more than any other smartphone in the world, as well as dual-band 802.11 a/b/g/n Wi-Fi support for up to 150 Mbps and Bluetooth 4.0. iPhone 5s delivers 10 hours of talk time on 3G networks, up to 10 hours of web browsing on Wi-Fi and LTE networks and up to 8 hours on 3G networks, and up to 10 hours of video playback and up to 40 hours of audio playback.
Pricing & Availability
iPhone 5s comes in gold, silver or Space Grey. iPhone 5s cases will be available in beige, black, blue, brown, yellow and (RED). iPhone 5s will be available in the US, Australia, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Puerto Rico, Singapore and the UK on Friday, September 20. It is expected to arrive in South Africa in December. iOS 7 will be available as a free software update starting on Wednesday, September 18 for iPhone 4 and later, iPad 2 and later, iPad mini and iPod touch (fifth generation). Some features may not be available on all products.