The Buyer's Guide

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Apple iPhone 5s

Apple iPhone 5s

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92 Engadget Score
The best in its category. We highly recommend it.
92

The best in its category. We highly recommend it.

How we score

The Engadget Score is a unique ranking of products based on extensive independent research and analysis by our expert editorial and research teams. The Global Score is arrived at only after curating hundreds, sometimes thousands of weighted data points (such as critic and user reviews).

Engadget Review

The iPhone 5s is an evolution of the iPhone 5, and isn't necessarily a must-have. It ushers in new technologies that will soon be standard on all of Apple's devices. While most consumers will be happy with the 5c, the 5s is better-suited for gamers and power users.

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Pros
  • A7 chip offers fast performance and 64-bit support
  • Touch ID works as advertised
  • Global LTE support
  • Improved camera
Cons
  • Last year's design
  • Touch ID needs third-party support
92 Engadget Score
The best in its category. We highly recommend it.
92

The best in its category. We highly recommend it.

How we score

The Engadget Score is a unique ranking of products based on extensive independent research and analysis by our expert editorial and research teams. The Global Score is arrived at only after curating hundreds, sometimes thousands of weighted data points (such as critic and user reviews).

Scores

Engadget

92
 

User Reviews

10
WeaponZero
An awful product that should be avoided. You'll be sorry. - Engadget
90
tauber
The best in its category. We highly recommend it. - Engadget
80
afa2109
It's good but you can sure get better camera, battery life and productivity...read more
Write a Review

Score Breakdown

 
90
Average user Score
 
10
WeaponZero
02.03.16
An awful product that should be avoided. You'll be sorry. - Engadget
 
90
tauber
09.17.15
The best in its category. We highly recommend it. - Engadget
 
80
afa2109
09.14.15
It's good but you can sure get better camera, battery life and productivity for its price.
 
90
digitalUtpal
07.09.15
After years of longing and desire to own The Phone – d’ iPhone, I finally grabbed a good deal at the local Reliance Digital store and have been just blown away since then. Along with the feeling of belonging to the special class – the class who owns an iPhone, I have realized that it’s a very powerful and clean product to own. Brilliant design –all Metal stands out giving an aura of quality, in comparison to all plasticky competitors, except For maybe the HTC One’s, who are the closest competitors. It’s for the users who seek power in their smartphones, with occasional gaming thrown in.Design – The design is similar to the Iphone 5 with the same compactness and 4-inch screen, maybe a disappointment for those seeking larger screens. the phone’s measurements remain unchanged as well: at 123.8 x 58.6 x 7.6mm (4.87 x 2.31 x 0.3 inches). It even weighs the same, at 112g (3.95 ounces). Likewise, the 5s also features a 4-inch, 1,136 x 640 Retina display with a pixel density of 326 pixels per inch.There is a new colour – Space Grey…though mine is the new Champagne Gold variant, which is looking good. The screen is crisp and bright, offering great viewing angles and texts look sharp. I am bowled over.The major change with Iphone 5 is the Home button wherein the TouchID fingerprint sensor is located . Cool. It provides a extra layer of security for access to the phone and also to purchase on the App store.Even some apps support TouchID integration like Dropbox, Mobikwik. Under the hood it has the A7 chip with 64-bit support, the first in its class at launch with M7 motion co-processor to take care of gaming and measuring motion data. It has support for 4G LTE, GPS, dual-band 802.11a/b/g/n…Touch ID – It’s the first usable fingerprint sensor which is a biometric one. It’s well integrated with the Home button with sapphire glass and works perfectly every time, except when you have wet hands. It’s worth pointing out that you’ll still need to set-up a pass code and verify at certain times, in addition to verifying the biometric fingerprint. After every reboot, the passcode would still be required, so don’t forget it…Battery Life – Battery life is a big issue for most Smartphones with all power-hogging apps, but the 64-bit architecture and A7 processor solves this problem to some extent. A full recharge lasts 8 hours on a 3G network…on 4G, it’s around 6 hours as my AirTel 4G are not optimized…Since it’s all apps that make it the IPhone, that a challenge I think we have to live with. But the good point is that the phone charges really fast. It took around 1 hour and 40 mins to charge the battery in full. But power users would need a power bank to carry them through for the entire day.Camera – The camera is one of the best and I truly enjoyed it. Colour reproduction is good and the white balance is excellent. Burst mode helps in capturing fast action with the slow motion mode at 120 fps in video taking my breadth away. Personally, I like the HDR mode that combines 3 shots to give me the best picture. Low light is still not for smartphone camera’s. The phone also offers a dual-LED True Tone flash for taking more natural pictures in the dark. The face time HD front camera has BSI (back illuminated sensor) for selfies. Videos shot in 1080p were excellent.The camera app provides filters like Instragram. I use the Camu app for excellent focus & filters. Direct upload to Twitter, Facebook, Linked-in etc. is possible and easy to do so. Selfie’s are easy on the IPhone 5s with the shutter timer provided and is a helpful feature. The camera App also allows you to set your favorite photos at one place with just tapping the favorite icon. The time-Lapse mode allows you to speed up your videos and create fantastic stories. Auto exposure setting, ability to recover recently deleted photo is provided. All in the entire Camera is a worthy feature in the IPhone 5s.Performance – The 64-bit support makes the phone a breeze to operate. Apps open fast and loads faster.I believe apps are more beautiful in the Iphone than anywhere. GPS gets latched faster and using the Map feature helps in finding locations.I have used this feature thoroughly and have been helped a lot. Have used GoogleMaps more, to be honest.Call quality is good, but signal latching is nowhere near the class of a NOKIA phone…But get’s the job done . The phone rarely freezes and on rare occasion when it does, it recovers fast.Software – The phone shipped with iOS 7 and since then I have upgraded it to iOS 8 and is the heart of the IPhone experience. The notification center helps in multi-tasking and is a big step forward by Apple. The Music app is good and can be closely integrated with apps like Shazam. AirDrop allows sharing with other iOS devices easily. The messaging app allows you to respond via the Notification tray, without going into the app and arranges messages in thread for better accessibility.Besides SIRI is well integrated and understand my native English well, though far away from Google Now. It can pull up Music request, though requires a bit of training. Safari is fast and good. The Reader option and ability to request Desktop website is nice. The clock app shows World Time, provides Alarm & Timer facilities. The software is one of the easiest to learn, even for Android users and the learning is aided by the Tips app that Apple provides.Mail set-up is a breeze and provides the easy way of working, even corporate mails.The list is endless and I think I have made the right decision buying this beauty and would advice you also. A massive range of free & paid apps in the iTunes store further increases the joy. Browse it to your hear content, try it out…Wrap Up: Is it a Good Buy?The IPhone 5s is a solid device and I am happy to the core. Maybe the price is on the higher side and lot of competitors like LG G series, HTC One’s etc. provides similar features and a larger screen, but it’s the class of an IPhone that stands out. This is a device that is still relevant now, have been getting regular updates, fast, well constructed, excellent Camera and software optimized. It would go on for another year and still give competition to new entrants.With a lower price point of around 34k to 37k at major online sellers like Amazon, it’s a must buy, purely for the Apple ecosystem. Enjoy this for another year, and then maybe upgrade to an IPhone 6 at a lower price point. This is an advice from a first time user of IPhone and a happy one…. It’s a www.trustedGadgets.in review
 
70
mo1245
05.29.15
Definitely looking forward to returning to the Android family. This phone was not very customizable and small things began to annoy me (things that I miss from old Androids, i.e. Led notification, certain clock settings, etc. ). Even though I own an Ipad and Macbook, I cannot commit to the limitations of an iPhone.
 
70
systemBuilder2
05.07.15
I bought this phone when 2 x Moto Razr Maxx phones failed to connect reliably to the access points at our house, both were returned. Overall, I enjoyed the phone for a few months but was always disappointed by the tiny, tiny, tiny display. I bought a Nexus 5 to solve that problem, and it was a big upgrade from iPhone. Now when I go back to the IPhone, I am bothered by the clumsy, inconsistent user interface, the lack of universally visible back, home, and tasks soft buttons, like in Android, and the extreme clumsiness of the iTunes app when it's the 21st century and iTunes should work more like the Google Play (web based) store, where I can administer everything about all my devices.
 
90
jwillyburns
03.02.15
Love the iPhone 5S. Easy to use, like nearly all Apple products, and a step up in quality from the iPhone 4. Love the touch ID to unlock my phone and make iTunes purchases. So convenient, but maybe it actually enables me to check my phone even more than I need to... Camera is key. Way clearer pictures than the 4. Size is perfect -- enough so that I'm hesitant to upgrade to the 6. I really think it's too big.
 
70
lukemackey94
02.05.15
I love the phone BUT the battery life doesn't last me more than 5 hours, and sometimes just dies when on about 20%. The cellular data reception can also be a pain. I find myself having to search for a 3G and 4G signal a lot. The more and more I use it the more I feel it's probably to small and a little bulky. Thats why Im looking for new phone (Either M9 or iphone 6) . iOS is the simplest operating system I've ever used and that's exactly what I need from a phone. Camera is spectacular even at 8MP. Touch sensor makes things so easy. I think 7/10 is fair. If I'm paying $600+ I need my battery to be stronger.
 
90
dixon02
01.30.15
Simple to use quality phone. It looks great and is highly chip and scratch resistant. Runs smoothly and copes really well with a number of apps running at once. Great quality camera, and hi res screen. The fingerprint ID is something completely different and actually works better than I expected. Overall a super phone.
 
90
resopal
01.11.15
The best in its category. We highly recommend it. - Engadget

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