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Apple iPhone 5s review

8.7/10 AVG.
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Apple iPhone 5s
Apple iPhone 5s
Apple iPhone 5s
Apple iPhone 5s
Apple iPhone 5s
Apple iPhone 5s
Apple iPhone 5s

Informr score
The Apple iPhone 5s currently has an Informr score of 8.7 out of 10. This score is based on our evaluation of 51 sources including reviews from users and the web's most trusted critics.

What's good

  • Speedy performance
  • Beautiful display
  • Great camera
  • Flexible LTE support
  • Decent battery life
  • Solid design

What's bad

  • Lack of NFC support
  • Mid-sized screen
  • Lack of memory expansion
  • High off-contract price

The iPhone 5s is the latest flagship device to lead the iPhone dynasty. With a redesigned processor, fingerprint scanner, improved camera, a bounty of new camera features and iOS 7, the phone is receiving rave reviews from virtually every reviewer around. Whether you are looking for your first smartphone or simply upgrading your existing phone, there are few devices with which the 5s cannot compete. TechCrunch’s Darrel Etherington claims “With the iPhone 5s, Apple once again wins the right to claim the title of best smartphone available.”

One of most talked-about features of the 5s it the new 64-bit A7 chipset powering the device. This is the first example of a mobile device using 64-bit computing. This fact, combined with numerous other optimizations, place the 5s at the top of benchmark tests in virtually every category in Anandtech’s latest testings. Although many users will not notice a major performance gap between the 5s and other bleeding edge technologies, the ability for the phone to age gracefully is all but ensured by this upgrade.

Another major upgrade is the camera. The True Tone dual-LED flash shows markable difference from previous iPhone releases. The new camera software included with iOS 7 also adds a number of new features, including 10FPS burst mode and 720p slow-motion capture. Round this all off with the fingerprint scanner, support for 13 different bands of LTE coverage and the sleek aluminum case design and you have a premium phone that is deserving of the praise that is has received.

When searching for flaws in the iPhone 5s, most are minor issues instead of glaring. Lack of memory card support could pose a problem for media users, lack of NFC support limits sharing options and, while gorgeous, the 4-inch display on the device is a fair bit smaller than many of its competitors. However, most of this is compensated for by the build quality and performance of the device. Engadget’s Myriam Joire sums up the device well when she says “In what would otherwise be considered a mundane update to the iPhone 5, Apple somehow managed to appeal to both the geek (64-bit support, M7 coprocessor, Touch ID) and the average Joe (a fresh, colorful iOS 7), all while laying the groundwork for the company's future.”

Operating system
Operating system
1.3 GHz
1.3 GHz
Screen Size
Screen Size
8+ MP
8+ MP
1570 mAh

What the Critics Are Saying...

The Standard
The Standard

Overall, while it’s definitely an evolution of the 5, the 5S does more than enough to warrant an upgrade. The fingerprint sensor alone is a huge timesaver, and also an added layer of security desperately needed on modern devices - as Apple itself admitted that 50 per cent of iPhone 5 owners don’t ev...

- Mark Prigg, The Standard

The iPhone 5S may look like an iPhone 5, but it's better in all the right ways. If you are very comfortable with a bigger screen you might want to look elsewhere, but the iPhone 5S is a consummate performer that puts very few steps wrong.

- Evan Kypreos , TrustedReviews
Gadget Review
Gadget Review

For those set on getting a 5s, it’s not a bad decision by any means. But it is flawed, and you may want to skip some of the cooler features like the fingerprint reader just to keep the usability the same. After returning to the iPhone 5, I rarely feel like I’m missing anything.

- James Pikover, Gadget Review
Expert Reviews
Expert Reviews

At first, Apple's decision to stick with the same case and screen size may have seemed like it wasn't moving forwards, but after using the phone extensively we couldn't disagree more. It's incredibly fast, beating its quad-core rivals hands down, has plenty of resolution for web browsing and apps, f...

- David Ludlow, Expert Reviews
Fone Arena
Fone Arena

As you’d expect, the iPhone 5s is the best iPhone yet. Apple has delivered a measured but meaningful update to what remains one of the most popular smartphones out there. The forward looking 64 bit processor, M7 motion coprocessor and Touch ID all combine to give a significant boost to the har...

- Dhruv Bhutani, Fone Arena

Prices (Where to Buy)

Common Questions

Apple iPhone 5s prices will vary depending on retailer, age, special offers and whether or not it's purchased with a service plan. If purchased with a 2 year service contract for example, you would likely pay much less for the phone itself up front. Apple's suggested retail price is $549.00. You can compare iPhone 5s prices from around the web here on The Informr.

We've got you covered! Download a free PDF copy of the Apple iPhone 5s user manual here.

Apple backs up the iPhone 5s with a 1 Year parts & labour warranty.

If your iPhone 5s has problems and is still within its warranty period, you could contact Apple support or the retailer you purchased the phone from. You'll find Apple's contact information here. If your phone is off warranty and needs repair for a physical problem such as a broken screen or bad battery, you should visit an authorized service centre or a local phone repair shop. You can also connect with others in The Informr Community Forum to find and share answers to questions.


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Screen Size

The Apple iPhone 5s's screen size is 4 inches with 640 x 1136 pixels resolution.

1.3 GHz

There is a Apple A7 Dual core 1.3 GHz processor (CPU).


The phone runs on the iOS 7 (Update Available: 12) operating system (OS).

8+ MP

You can take photos with the phone's onboard 8+ MP camera.

There is also a secondary front facing camera with 1+ megapixels resolution.

16/32/64 GB

Internal memory is 16/32/64 GB. No external card slot is available for expansion.


The phone is powered by a Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion), 1570 mAh battery. Apple's performance ratings are 600 minutes, 600 minutes Wi-Fi surfing.

iPhone 5s Specs

Release Date September 20, 2013
Regions Available USA, Canada, United Kingdom
Operating System iOS 7 (Update Available: 12)

Compare iOS Smartphones

Processor Apple A7 Dual core 1.3 GHz
Internal Storage 16/32/64 GB
Hearing Aid Compatible Yes
Noise Cancellation Yes
SAR Head: 1.19 W/kg
Body: 1.18 W/kg
Manufacturer Warranty 1 Year
Accessories Included USB Power Adapter, Manual, Headset, Data Cable
Mobile / Cellular Data
Push-to-talk (PTT) No
Wi-Fi Calling Unknown
Voice over LTE (VoLTE) Unknown
SIM card size
Dual SIM No
USB Lightning
USB OTG Support No
Infrared No
Bluetooth 4.0
Bluetooth Profiles A2DP, AVRCP, HID, HFP, PAN
Bluetooth Audio Codecs SBC
Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n
Mobile Hotspot Yes
Memory Expansion Slot No
Data Tethering Compatibility Yes
Main Camera
Resolution / Aperture
8+ Megapixels
Yes (Dual LED)
Additional Rear Camera Info
Auto focus, Face detection, Geotagging, Multi-shot, Panorama, HDR
Video Recording Formats
3GP / 3GPP, H.264 / AVC, MPEG-4, AVI
Video Recording Parameters
Full HD (1920 x 1080 pixels), 30 fps
Front Camera
Resolution / Aperture
1+ Megapixels
Additional Front Camera Info
Video Recording Parameters
HD (1280 x 720 pixels)
Display / Screen
Type Color
Technology LCD (IPS)
Colors 16.7 million
Resolution 640 x 1136 pixels
Pixel Density 326 pixels
Size 4 inches
Secondary Display No
Sensors Ambient Light, Proximity, Motion / Accelerometer, Gyroscope, Digital Compass
Multi-Touch Yes
Fingerprint-Resistant Coating Yes
Additional Display Features Capacitive touch screen
Power & Battery
Battery Type Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion)
Battery Capacity 1570 mAh
Removable Battery No
Wireless Charging No
Fast Charging No
Video Playback Time Up to 600 minutes
Internet Use (Wi-Fi) Up to 600 minutes
Internet Use (Cellular) Unknown
Talk Time Up to 600 minutes
Standby Time Up to 10.4 days
Mixed Usage
Physical Characteristics
Design Type Bar
Material Aluminium
Colors Space Gray, Gold, Silver
Dimensions [H x W x D] 12.4 x 5.9 x 0.8 cm (4.9 x 2.3 x 0.3 in)
Weight 112 grams
Water Resistant / Waterproof Unknown
Rugged design No
IP Rating No
Headset Jack 3.5mm
External Speakers Yes
Input / Navigation
Sleep / Wake Key Yes
Home Key Yes
Input / Keyboard Type Touchscreen
Navigation Type Touchscreen
External Volume Control Yes
Fingerprint Sensor Yes
Additional Information Messaging: SMS, MMS, IM
Multi-Use Smart Phone / PDA: Yes
Graphics: Yes
Backlit Illumination: Yes
Zoom / Magnification: Yes
Screen Orientation Lock: Yes
Predictive Text Entry: Yes
Voice Commands: Yes
Keypad/Screen Lock: Yes
Multiple Numbers Per Contact: Email address, Other fields
Contact Groups: Yes
Voice Activated Dialing: Yes
Photo Caller ID: Yes
Web Browser: Yes
Email Client: Yes
Email Protocols: POP3, IMAP, SMTP, Microsoft Exchange
PC Synchronization: Yes
Audio Formats: AAC, AAC+, AIFF, Apple Lossless, eAAC+, MP3, WAV
Video Playback Formats: 3GP / 3GPP, AVI, H.264 / AVC, MPEG-4
Streaming Video: Yes
Custom Ringtones: Yes
Vibration Alert: Yes
Downloadable Ringtones: Yes
Ringer ID: Yes
Speakerphone: Yes
Haptic Feedback: Yes
Data Tethering: Yes
Mobile Hotspot: Yes
Viewable document types: XLS, RTF, PPT, PPTX, JPG, TIFF, GIF, DOC, DOCX, PDF, TXT, HTML
Games: Downloadable
Apps: Downloadable
Included Software / Apps: -
To-Do / Task List, Calendar, World Clock, Alarm, Stop Watch, Timer, Calculator, Weather, Stocks, Maps, NotePad, Voice Memos / Recorder

Other Names (AKA): Apple A1457, A1533, A1543

Fingerprint identity sensor built into the Home button


Model A1457
GSM/EDGE, UMTS/HSPA+/DC-HSDPA, LTE (Bands 1, 2, 3, 5, 7, 8, 20)
Model A1533
CDMA EV-DO Rev. A and Rev. B, UMTS/HSPA+/DC-HSDPA, GSM/EDGE, LTE (Bands 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 8, 13, 17, 19, 20, 25)
Model A1453
CDMA EV-DO Rev. A and Rev. B, UMTS/HSPA+/DC-HSDPA, GSM/EDGE, LTE (Bands 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 8, 13, 17, 19, 20, 25, 26)

Related Links Manual (PDF)
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