If you’ve been reading MBT for a while, you know that I use an iPhone as my primary device. I switched over from a Blackberry (what was I thinking?) in October 2011. I loved my iPhone 4S for the 11 months that I had it but I convinced myself I needed to upgrade to the iPhone 5 in September 2012. I bought it unsubsidized (ouch!) in order to keep my unlimited data with Verizon. I was truly happy with the iPhone 5. The screen was bigger and brighter, it was unbelievably light compared to previous smartphones, and the processor was incredibly ‘snappy’. Flash forward another 12 months and I was sure I was going to sit the iPhone 5s out. That is until I was offered a family member’s own upgrade which wouldn’t affect my unlimited data. Now after using the 5s everyday for the past 3 months am I still happy I upgraded?
First let’s start off by saying that if you have an iPhone 4S or older, you want to switch over to iOS from Android, or are in the market for your first smartphone, I highly recommend the 5s. It’s a beautifully made phone with incredible processing power that only a handful of other handsets can even compete with. Here are my observations after using the iPhone 5s for 3 months:
TouchID, when it works correctly, is a game changer. I love not having to type a 4 digit passcode hundreds of times a day when I want to unlock my phone. All my information is safe unless I place my thumb on the home button and that’s a great feeling. Also downloading an app or a song without typing in my iTunes password brings me great satisfaction. It isn’t until I use my iPad Air that I realize how much I love TouchID.
The most underrated feature on the iPhone 5s is the new M7 coprocessor chip. The M7 can tell if you are driving in a car or walking on foot. Personally I love being able to download the Pedometer++ app and have it count my steps with out any negative effect to my battery life. It certainly is a great alternative to buying a Nike+ Fuelband or a Jawbone UP 24.
The camera is top notch, even in less than ideal settings. I am by no means a camera expert, so I won’t get into what makes this camera great. All I know is that even in poorly lit rooms I can still get decent photos with my 5s. The dual flash does help with nighttime photos as well. They say that the best camera is the one you have on you and with the iPhone 5s you have a great one.
The Not So Good
The screen size is still lacking compared to other flagship phones like the Samsung Galaxy S4 and the HTC One. It’s pretty much a slam dunk that when Apple unveils its next generation smartphone, presumably next fall, it will have a larger display. If you are on the fence on whether or not you want to be stuck with a phone with a 4″ display for the next two years you may be better off waiting a while.
While I personally think that iOS 7 is an attractive OS there are still some kinks to be worked out. The dreaded Apple white screen of death (where your phone basically restarts on its own) appears way more often than it should. Curiously this seems to only be an issue on the iPhone 5s and not previous generations.
The speakers still leave much to be desired if you want to pump out some serious noise. You might want to invest in a bluetooth speaker if that’s the case and that can start to get expensive.
I am happy that I upgraded to the iPhone 5s in September. I believe this iPhone is the biggest ‘s’ upgrade we’ve seen (iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4S). TouchID has changed the way I use my phone and the M7 chip is something I use every single day. Let us know what you think of the iPhone 5s in the poll or on Twitter!