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TMFPostOfTheDay (< 20)

iPhone 5s Snapshot

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September 11, 2013 – Comments (3)

Board: Apple

Author: 0gre

Maybe because I was thinking about the 5c too much, I figured the 5s would be a fairly minor update, but what they actually delivered is a pretty big step up. Here's my 30 second look.

The CPU
Big jump up to 64 bits. Much faster CPU and much faster GPU. Games are the obvious beneficiary here but other apps benefit too. I suspect Apple leans on the CPU/GPU a lot for the advanced camera functions which require a lot of speed to pull off. I don't see much lagging on my iPhone 5 and don't use it for gaming so no chance this would make me upgrade by itself.

Fingerprint Sensor
This has been hashed out a lot, in a nutshell it's a home button that authenticates you when you use it. It doesn't just bypass the pin code though, no more putting in your Apple ID password when you want to buy an app or change privacy settings. It's a neat feature, not something that would motivate me to upgrade, but I suspect once you get used to it you'll never want to go back to putting in pin codes again.

The big place I see the finger-print sensor driving sales is in the enterprise where security is more important. The iPhone already has a better reputation for security and adding the finger print sensor takes it up a couple notches. Hopefully there is a good API for developers to integrate fingerprint authentication into their own apps the way Apple has with the app store.

Video
In a nutshell HD quality, 120 frames per second recording. YouTube will never be the same. Next month's flaming twerking video is going to be in high quality in slow motion.

Coprocessor
This one is interesting and out-of-the-blue. They added a dedicated processor to keep track of when you are walking, running, driving, sitting, or have the phone on the night-stand. (I'm hoping for a cycling mode). The accelerometers have always been there, they just added a low power CPU so this can work all the time without running the battery down (much). This is similar Motorola's always on voice activation and gesture detection. This eliminates the need for dedicated motion tracking wristbands like the Fit-bit or the Nike Fuel and lets them shift the phone's behavior based on what you are doing. So when you are driving it won't try to join networks and when it's sitting on the nightstand it polls the network less often.

The Camera
The iPhone 5 camera is great, I'm super happy with it, I was hoping we'd get a better camera in the 5s and... Apple didn't disappoint.

They had me at "15% larger sensor"

Bigger sensors means more detail in low-light images and less motion blur in action shots (because they don't have to keep the 'aperture' open as long). An 8 megapixel image prints out at 12x18", plenty big for most amateur photographers, the bigger sensor and aperture improves the quality of those pictures.

Apple talks about all kinds of magic they do in software to make their images even better... but without spending some time with it, it's impossible to make a good judgement about how important the post processing is. Many of the improvements relate to snapping multiple shots with slightly different settings in a fraction of a second and automatically picking the best of them, or even piecing parts of each image together to create a sort of franken-image. Considering how good the other software camera features are from Apple I expect good things.

The camera... now this is why I'm almost certain to be upgrading to a 5s. I'm a huge photo nut and I love the iPhone 5's camera so this has me excited.

Summary
Maybe I should have figured on this being a bigger refresh? The camera in particular is impressive, they've packed a lot of appealing upgrades into what was already a top notch camera. Lots of good stuff. If someone else released it they would call a bunch of features 'innovative', but since it's Apple they are just expected features.

PS: Why lower case? Seems a weird thing to change. 

 

3 Comments – Post Your Own

#1) On September 12, 2013 at 9:31 AM, drgroup (69.05) wrote:

When is the apple world going to realize that all you do is purchase/test beta junk and wait 3-4 months to purchase another generation of beta junk. They love your blind loyalty....

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#2) On September 12, 2013 at 5:49 PM, Rockfish88 (< 20) wrote:

Well, drgroup, nice constructive comment. Apple's "beta junk" has millons and millions of satisfied customers, including myself.  Just because Apple products don't work for you, just like products based on other iOS competitors don't work for me, is no reason to assume that we Apple users are blind to the benefits of other products and/or to the shortcomings of Apple's products.  With knowledge of the benefits and failings of each we choose a system that works for us. Your comment does nothing to explain how and why you come to your conclusion as to which system is better; if you are going to argue that someone has made a bad choice then make your argument. We're big kids. We can listen and choose.  Neener neener is not a compelling argument.

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#3) On September 13, 2013 at 1:13 PM, drgroup (69.05) wrote:

 Rockfish88...there is nothing I can reveal to you that would affect your reasoning and logic. Enjoy the I5. But start saving today for the I6. This will come out when enough people submit their issues with the fingerprint activation....

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