Today Apple finally unveiled their next generation iPhone, unsurprisingly called the iPhone 5S. It lines up perfectly with the rumours we’d heard just months before and will come in three different colours. The rumours which began circulating last week regarding a fingerprint scanner were also confirmed and it’ll help add security to Apple’s flagship device.
Literally moments after Apple were done talking about the iPhone 5C we were shown the iPhone 5S; it runs iOS 7, Apple’s brand new OS which is said to be installed onto 700 million devices when it launches, it has a fantastic new camera, and will come sporting Apple’s new A7 chip which has 64-bit architecture making it 40x faster.
The most stand-out feature and the one we were all waiting for was the Touch ID – The rumoured fingerprint scanner. In the last few days we’ve heard more and more about Apple’s new iPhone coming with a fingerprint scanner, but this isn’t some sort of gimmick, it’s Apple’s latest security measure which can only be used to unlock the iPhone as well as an alternative to entering your iTunes password.
The technology inside Apple’s trademark iPhone home button is quite impressive. This integrated fingerprint sensor is housed in a laser cut sapphire crystal home button that scans your “sub-epidermal layers” at around 500 points per inch to read your fingerprint and unlock the phone, this is surrounded by the sensor ring which activates the Touch ID technology.
Now for power, the iPhone 5S seems to have it all. The aforementioned A7 chip Apple says makes the iPhone 5S the first 64-bit smartphone with iOS 7 and built in apps being optimised for the 64-bit architecture. Apple claim that this will give the iPhone 5S a 40x boost in CPU speed and a 56x boost in GPU performance – bear in mind that this is all compared to the original iPhone, not the iPhone 5 or 4. The A7 chip also has support for OpenGL ES 3.0 making games look pretty breathtaking.
To make the iPhone 5S even better they introduced the new M7 “motion co-processor” which is dedicated purely to the accelerometer, gyroscope, and compass. This processer enables what Apple describe as a “new generation of health and fitness apps.” and proceeded to demonstrate a new Nike app. It has it’s own API also; the new CoreMotion API found in iOS 7 identifies user motion giving a more intelligent look at what the user is doing whether that’s walking, running, lying down, standing up, or doing cartwheels.
Apple has also improved the camera, something else which was revealed before time, but we’ll get to that. The new camera found in the iPhone 5S has a brand new Apple-designed lense with an aperture of f/2.2 something which my photography buff wife tells me is pretty spectacular. It also houses a sensor that’s 15 percent larger. In terms of megapixels, it remains the same as the iPhone 5 at 8 megapixels but each pixel is bigger making the picture outcome much better.
The camera software itself has been revamped and optimised for the new sensor found in the 5S. The new software improves each picture using a series of adjustments to the white balance, exposure, the tone map, and autofocus giving you the best picture. Also when you take a snap, the iPhone will take multiple snaps at the same time and picks the best one for you.
Apple have also introduced a new slow-mo feature to their camera software which records in 720p HD at 120 frames per second. It’s capable of taking a 10fps burst mode for as long as you hold the shutter, it also has a sort of auto image stabilisation which also analyses multiple images when you take a single shot to choose the best one for you. Finally they’ve adjusted the panorama to take 28 megapixel shots that adjusts the exposure as you move the phone.
Now, onto the flash, in a series of leaked images there appeared to be a new dual LED flash which actually turned out to be correct – in some respects – there is two LED flashes, but they’re what Apple are calling “true tone”. These flashes are compromised of two LED’s a “cool white” LED and a “warm amber” LED. The flashes match the colour balance of the light in the room giving you a better picture with the flash on. The two flashes work together with what Apple claim to be over 1,000 variations.
Finally down to battery life the iPhone 5S offers 250 hours of standby. 10 hours of browsing on LTE/4G and 10 hours talk time on 3G.
Battery life is also improved, with up to 250 hours of standby, 10 hours of browsing on LTE, talk on 3G, browsing on WiFi, and listening to music.
The price of the iPhone 5s will begin at $199 for the 16GB model unsurprisingly on a two-year contract. The same contract applies to the 32GB for $299 and 64GB for $399. Just like the iPhone 5C it’ll go on sale September 20th, with online preorders set to start September 13th.