Apple just unveiled their latest and most advanced iPhone to date, the iPhone 5S. Typically, the “œS” iteration of the iPhone provides minimal upgrade and is usually targeted for iPhone users two or more generations old. However, the iPhone 5S comes with a new technology that might just make people upgrade abruptly, the TouchID fingerprint sensor.
Before we delve into what’s new with the iPhone 5S, let’s take a look at what got carried over from the iPhone 5. The iPhone 5S have the same slim design and aluminum construction as that of the iPhone 5. It has the same 4-inch screen size and display resolution. It has the same amount of RAM and storage configuration. Same LTE support and 8-megapixel camera as well.
What has changed is its processor. It now uses a 1.7GHz dual-core A7 chip which Apple claims can gives you up to twice the CPU and graphics performance as the A6 chip. This chip also makes apps like the Camera perform faster. It also comes with a new M7 coprocessor to handle motion data coming from the accelerometer, gyroscope, and compass, and also allows the A7 chip to consume less power.
By the way, the 64-bit architecture part is just marketing fluff although it allows the iPhone to be future-proof for heavy apps that can make use of large amounts of memories. However, that advantage is moot on the iPhone 5S since the device is still restricted with its 1GB RAM.
Oh yeah, the camera now has dual-LED flash too. Ho hum. While NFC is still missing.
Now onto the TouchID fingerprint sensor and why I’m excited about it. The sapphire glass Home button on the iPhone 5S now doubles as a fingerprint sensor for you to unlock your phone. This is really appealing for people like me who don’t bother with passcodes because its cumbersome to input them every time you want to use your phone.
TouchID solves that problem and it works rather well thanks to fingerprint-scanner company AuthenTec which Apple acquired last year just for this feature. It was the same company that put a fingerprint sensor on the Motorola Atrix back in 2011 but the technology has been refined for a faster and accurate response.
Aside from unlocking your iPhone, you can even use your fingerprint to confirm iTunes purchases so you don’t have to input your password every time. Who knows in the future you can even use this method to sign-in on secure sites using your iPhone. The iPhone 5S can also store up to 5 individual fingerprints to remove any suspicion from your partner.
Lastly, the iPhone 5S now comes in White, Gold, and Space Grey. No word yet on on local availability but based on HK Apple Store prices for unlocked units, expect the local price to be:
- iPhone 5S 16GB ““ Php32,000
- iPhone 5S 32GB ““ Php36,000
- iPhone 5S 64GB ““ Php40,500
So yeah, the Touch ID and that gold color could make people jump to the iPhone 5S bandwagon even if they’re still contented with their current iPhone.