Released in mid-September 2013, the iPhone 5s ($99 to $149 from the Apple Store) is a cosmetically minor but internally significant update to the iPhone 5. Featuring the same aluminum and glass design as the iPhone 5, including the same 4″ screen size, dimensions, and weight, the iPhone 5s introduced gold and space gray options to Apple’s product lines, while remaining available in the same white and silver combination as the iPhone 5.
From the outside, the most obvious change was the addition of Touch ID: a fingerprint sensor inside of the iPhone’s Home button. Ringed with metal color-matched to the iPhone 5s’s body, the sapphire-crystal coded fingerprint reader can unlock the screen by matching its scan to 5 distinct fingers, and similarly substitute a scan for a password when making iTunes purchases.
Internally, the iPhone 5s makes significant improvements over the iPhone 5 and iPhone 5c in two main categories: processing and cameras. Replacing the iPhone 5’s A6 processor is a new A7 chip with twice the speed, much improved graphics, and a 64-bit architecture. The A7 enabled the iPhone 5s to be the first 64-bit smartphone, capable of enhanced gaming, video processing, and even more advanced apps in the future. It continues to support LTE cellular networks and 802.11n wireless.
The camera system benefitted from an all-new rear 8-megapixel sensor with improved light sensitivity for low-light photography. Also new is a True-Tone flash, a dual-LED flash that increases skin color accuracy when taking photos in the dark. Apple also added a Burst Mode feature to capture 10 photos per second, and a new Slow-Mo video capture mode to take 120FPS video.
As of 2015, the iPhone 5s is in the middle of the iPhone pack in performance, but still the best option available for users with small hands and/or small pockets. Everyone else should give serious consideration to the thinner, faster, and longer-running iPhone 6 or 6 Plus. The iPhone 5s is sold only in 16GB and 32GB storage capacities, the former very small. If you’re going to buy this model, we’d strongly advise spending the extra $50 for the 32GB model.
Pixelmator today released the latest version of its photo editor for iPhone and iPad, Pixelmator version 2.1. The update brings full support for iPad iOS 9 multitasking, the ability to import and edit 8K resolution images, Open-In-Place document management across iOS and more.
As part of general improvements for iOS 9, such as adoption of Apple’s new system font (San Francisco) in the UI, the primary change is the addition of the iPad multitasking support. This means Pixelmator can now be docked to the side of the screen using Slide Over. On more recent iPads, you can also pop Pixelmator into Split View for true 2-app side-by-side multitasking.
Along with the new features, iOS 9 promised an improvement to the ‘foundation’ of iOS with performance boosts and battery usage improvements across the system. However, as always seems to happen with new versions of iOS, not all users are satisfied. There have been many reports that iOS 9 is causing lagginess, especially on older hardware such as the iPhone 5. Some phones are getting stuck on the ‘slide to upgrade’ screen and users are frozen out of their devices completely.
Seeing as iOS 9 supports all the same devices as iOS 8, it’s quite important that the OS runs well on all iPhones and iPads, not just the recent Apple devices with the faster A7 or A8 processors.
How has the iOS 9 affected your iPhone? Is it slower than before the update … or maybe it’s actually faster? Let us know with the following poll …
After a few months in beta, Apple has today released iOS 9 to the world for everyone with an iPhone, iPad or iPod touch. Download the update from Settings on your iOS device, then tap ‘General’ and select ‘Software Update’. The required free space for installing iOS 9 is a lot lower than iOS 8, at around 1.3 GB, which should make it easier to upgrade your devices right away. Any device that runs iOS 8 can upgrade to iOS 9 and, naturally, iOS 9 will also ship preinstalled on Apple’s iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus when they are released next week.
But what exactly is new in iOS 9? Read on for a walkthrough of all the new features and changes in Apple’s latest iteration of its mobile operating system …
Keeping to the ‘Hey Siri’ theme of the event, the day before the big show, Apple has added a new set of reply phrases to Siri teasing the event tomorrow. There’s about a half-dozen new witty responses in addition to those added last week. To hear them, hold-down the Home Button activate Siri and say ‘Hey Siri, give me a hint’.
Obviously, these hints are little more than funny jokes (the binary one spells the word ‘Gotcha’ if decoded) and don’t give away secret product information. If you want details about what Apple is announcing tomorrow, read 9to5Mac’s exclusive roundup of the event, which will feature the new iPhone 6s and 6s Plus, iPad Pro, new Apple Watch bands and the unveiling of the long-awaited brand new Apple TV.
Check out the full gallery of new hints below and let us know in the comments if you find Siri saying any more hints we haven’t discovered …
A planning permission meeting for a new Apple Store in Memphis has seemingly revealed more information about Apple’s plans for its retail stores. According to the Apple representative, the Memphis project represents one of the first ‘next generation’ Apple Store designs that Apple is rolling out around the world, starting in the fall. The Memphis store will be part of the first rollout of the new look stores in the US.
So what does the ‘next generation’ Apple Store look like?