iPhone 5s review

Apple adds a fingerprint scanner and 64-bit processor to its flagship device, but is it still the top dog?

iOS 7 brings a needed redesign to Apple's mobile OS and adds features such as quick settings and automatic updates. iPhones are already prevalent in the business community and it's good to see enterprise features improved upon too.

The additions to the default mailbox are our favourite. It already had the option of the VIP inbox and now you can sort messages into "unread", "attachments", "flagged" items making them easier to keep track of on the move.

Apps can be set to automatically update and download across multiple iOS devices - useful if you've got an iPad too. We also love the AirDrop feature, which allows you to share files wirelessly with any other iOS/Mac devices using Wi-Fi.

The Notification centre and Quick Settings menus can be accessed by swiping from the top and bottom of screen - making it easier to see calls, text and emails or manage wireless connections and brightness. App switching is advanced with iOS now and shows a snapshot of the apps that are open rather than just the icons. These are long overdue features and an area where Android has led iOS for a year.

No significant changes have been made to the keyboard, which is unfortunate. It's not possible to install any third party apps either and this is an area we'd like to see Apple improve.


Apple has retained the beautifully crafted but fragile 112g aluminium chassis from the iPhone 5. The only way to tell the 5s apart from its predecessor is the difference in the home button or through the differences in colour. The 5s is available in Space Grey, Gold and Silver.

Apple has persisted with the same 4in Retina Display (1136 x 640) and no-one can fault screen quality - maximum brightness is clocked at 515cd/m2. However, it does feel like Apple has missed an opportunity. The iPhone has always been one of the smallest smartphones on the market with screen sizes of 3.5in and 4in offered. We'd like the option of a larger 5in display as this would enhance the web browsing and video playback experience.

Apple previously bowed to market pressure by releasing a smaller model of its iPad so we may see different screen sizes for the iPhone in the future.

Interestingly, Apple continues to leave out NFC connectivity - something all its rival have included in their flagship handsets.

Khidr Suleman is the Technical Editor at IT Pro, a role he has fulfilled since March 2012. He is responsible for the reviews section on the site  - so get in touch if you have a product you think might be of interest to the business world. He also covers the hardware and operating systems beats. Prior to joining IT Pro, Khidr worked as a reporter at Incisive Media. He studied law at the University of Reading and completed a Postgraduate Diploma in Magazine Journalism and Online Writing at PMA Training.