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7 Missing Features from the iPhone 5S

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In true Apple form, the company isn’t packing in as many features as it can into its latest and greatest smartphone, the iPhone 5S. In fact, Apple CEO Tim Cook, alluded to the company’s very measured way of waiting until technology is ready before introducing it into their devices saying, “We think deeply about experiences we want to create.” Unfortunately the philosophy also ensures that the company’s devices don’t get many of the features of their Android and Windows Phone counterparts. Here are some of the features that Apple’s iPhone 5S is missing.

Read: iPhone 5S release Date confirmed with iPhone 5C for September 20th

Video Highlights

When highlights first debuted on the HTC One, users marveled at the ability to create digital reels of their favorite memories, without having to upload video to a separate computer. While the iPhone 5S does have some improved camera software and hardware which allows users to capture better photos, Apple completely ignored the growing popularity of video highlights in smartphone software.

The iPhone 5S camera is a big improvement over the iPhone 5.

The iPhone 5S does have an upgraded camera, however it remains unclear whether any of it’s improvements will be enough to find off the newer camera designs of the Nokia Lumia 1020 and other high-end smartphones.

Serious Camera Upgrades

Ignoring media trends, Apple also choose not to introduce a seriously advanced camera in the iPhone 5S. Meanwhile Nokia’s Lumia 1020 Windows Phone and many the Samsung Galaxy Camera all have ways of enabling photo-capturing features that no one other than someone using a point-and-shoot camera would expect.

Bigger Displays

With this update, Apple also seems dead-set on ignoring the larger screen sizes that many manufacturers are beginning to use in other flagship smartphones. It wasn’t unusual for Apple to ignore trends in screen size, the company only introduced a larger iPhone screen with the iPhone 5. Still, the company is putting itself in a position where it’ll likely have to add new screen sizes to the mix at some point in the future.

New iPhone 5S colors.

Although the iPhone 5S comes in a new color, it’s design is exactly the same as the iPhone 5, so too is it’s display size.

All-New Design

Since Apple introduced the iPhone 5 last year, users were not expecting a significantly update with this phone’s design, and Apple didn’t throw them a wild card. Although its new fingerprint reader/home button design is completely different from devices that proceeded it, that’s the only major difference in form. There are some new color options.

No Simultaneous Data and Voice

Even though users have complained about it since the iPhone was first introduced to Verizon, users on that carrier still won’t be able to browse the internet using Safari and talk on the phone at the same time. Apple hasn’t addressed this issue in the iPhone 5S at all.

The iOS 7 lock screen is new as is the call screen.

Though the company has worked hard to upgrade the design and feel of iOS 7 including the calling application, users on Verizon still won’t be able to browse the internet and answer calls at the same time.

No Companion Devices

Just a week after the Samsung introduced Galaxy Gear at IFA 2013, the company hasn’t announced any companion devices for it. In a world where smartwatches and Google Glass are gaining momentum, many had hoped that Apple would deliver a companion experiences of its own. After all, rumors of an iWatch are spreading like wild-fire. Sadly, the company didn’t announce anything on that front, except that its latest devices would support the Bluetooth 4.0 standard that devices like the Nike+ wrist watches do.

Add NFC to that list

The iPhone 5S doesn’t feature any sort of near-field communications technology, with Apple seemingly happy with its new AirDrop and Bluetooth transfer technology. Meanwhile, NFC technology is finally catching on. More devices than ever include the technology, and many retailers are starting to support it. The technology would be a huge boon for the Passbook application included in the iOS 7, but it looks like users will have to wait another year to see if Apple includes the technology. By adding NFC, Apple would be able to allow its users to transfer information and process transactions without ever having to pull out their wallet.

By most accounts the iPhone 5S is a pretty forward-thinking device. It beefs up security for users with a new fingerprint reader behind its home button, and it even comes equipped with an 8 megapixel rear-facing camera for capturing amazing photographs.

Apple’s philosophy of slowly adding new technology to the iPhone is great for end users. It keeps features that just aren’t ready for prime time from taking up storage space on user’s devices and raising the price of each iPhone. It also means that users with Android and Windows Phone devices won’t be switching to the iPhone 5S if they value a few of the features that the device is missing.

The iPhone 5S will go on sale in the United States on September 20th for $199 with a two-year contract.

Travis Pope is a Reporter-at-large for GottaBeMobile. He's currently enjoying a romp in the dangerous quicksand that is Microsoft's Windows 8, Windows Phone 8, and Xbox ecosystem.

55 Comments

  1. ukandroid

    09/10/2013 at 1:52 pm

    Considering that many people wseems own either the 5C or 5S for two years under contract, the omission of wireless ac seems strange. Other recently launched phones like the Note 3 have it as do some other recent Apple devices like the Airport.

    • jason

      10/05/2013 at 4:16 pm

      quit bitchin about what Apple didn’t put on their new iPhone and just go buy an Android already. with just about every phone manufacturer making one you’ll find the features that you want and have a better operating system.

  2. Wes

    09/11/2013 at 3:30 pm

    The finger print sensor is nothing new, it was already introduced years ago on previous android phones, it never caught on and so was discontinued. I’m so fed up with
    apple taking credit for technology that they didn’t innovate!

    • Joe Larsen

      09/15/2013 at 7:48 pm

      Well its a different kind of finger scanner, it is so much more accurate, and they mentioned that others have used a scanner in their keynote. No one has fit one into a small round home button before thats for sure. It’s simple for unlocking a phone and buying apps, it was a completely innovative and logical move on their part.

    • habbibi

      09/23/2013 at 1:46 pm

      And how many technologies has Android stolen from Apple that they didn’t innovate?
      There was ONE previous android phone with a fingerprint scanner, the Atrix 4g, and it was discontinued because it was innaccurate and more of a neusance than a feature. Apple found a way to do it correctly, THAT is innovation.

      • Sam Sam

        10/17/2013 at 12:49 pm

        Are you sure it’s not progression ?

  3. some internet dude

    09/11/2013 at 5:41 pm

    “No Simultaneous Data and Voice”

    Still not a true multitasking OS. Looks like another flop for Apple. And the Chinese are none to keen on the 5C. Maybe the next time around Apple.

    • ukandroid

      09/11/2013 at 5:51 pm

      I too noticed that Apple has no Deal agreed with China Telecom who have around 75% of the Chinese mobile market. Apple share value on Nasdaq has lost over 5% since the launch event yesterday so it would seem others are not too excited about the 5C and 5S. Maybe Apple are saving things for an iPhone 6.

    • John

      09/12/2013 at 7:10 am

      AT&T allows it. It’s a verizon issue not the phone

      • anthony chase

        09/13/2013 at 4:25 pm

        it’s actually an iPhone issue because that’s the only 4G phone on Verizon that doesn’t allow it.

      • Rusty

        09/14/2013 at 3:55 pm

        It’s a little complicated, and it’s not really that AT&T allows it and Verizon doesn’t. It is partly an Apple issue, partly a Verizon / Sprint issue.

        4G LTE carries only data, not voice, and the iPhone has only one radio in it. (Well, okay, we’re not counting the bluetooth & wifi radios here.)

        When you get a phone call on Verizon or Sprint, you roll back to the CDMA network, which doesn’t do high-speed data. Because Apple only put one radio in the iPhone, you can do either 4G LTE (for data) or CDMA (for voice), but not both.

        With AT&T, you get a similar, but subtly different restriction. 4G LTE will still handle only data, but 4G (non-LTE) will handle both, as will the 3G that the earlier phones used. Thus, when the iPhone radio switches from 4G LTE down to the network that carries voice comms, it is still capable of handling data, and it will be able to do both at the same time.

        When you see all the phones from Sprint and Verizon that can do both voice and data at once, this is because they shoehorned an extra radio in there, so that the phone can connect to both CDMA and 4G LTE at the same time through separate radios. This is part of the reason that you see larger screens on some of the Samsung and HTC models: they had to pack an extra radio in there, so that forced them to use a bigger case, and a bigger case with a smaller screen would look stupid, so hey – bigger screen to fill up the blank space.

        • José R. Rivera

          09/17/2013 at 5:22 pm

          The simultaneous data and voice concern is absolutely a carrier issue (Verizon) not an Apple issue. Phone manufacturers started adding the 2nd radio to workaround a technology deficiency with the carrier. The solution would be to adopt the global standard, GSM. This is absolutely possible (Cingular – now AT&T – left TDMA in the rather than invest in building it out and moved to GSM). Verizon and Sprint did not, and instead put us all in an unfortunate situation of having many phones that are not compatible across networks, making it detrimental to the consumer. Because they have enough bulk behind them, though, they can and have, taken that path.

          • Rusty

            09/20/2013 at 6:21 pm

            Well, put -you- in an “unfortunate position” perhaps: I have AT&T. :)

          • Anthony

            09/23/2013 at 1:49 pm

            Are simultaneous voice and data really even an issue? How often do you really need to be surfing the web AND talking on the phone?. If you want to do that just connect to wifi and it’ll work.

          • Rusty

            09/23/2013 at 2:05 pm

            Yeah, simultaneous voice and data are a pretty important issue to me. I use maps and such while on the phone pretty frequently, or for browsing during boring / annoying conference calls, etc.

            Simultaneous voice and data is why I’m still using AT&T.

    • Brittany

      10/02/2013 at 10:46 pm

      *none too keen.

      And the author of the article trying to use “No Simultaneous Data and Voice” as an argument against the features of the iPhone5s is fallacious. It’s not a shortcoming of Apple or the iPhone 5s, it’s a shortcoming of Verizon. Other carriers allow it.

      Guess you would rather believe everything you see on the internet instead of checking your facts.

      Maybe the next time around, “some internet dude.”

    • Frank

      11/06/2013 at 12:55 pm

      That’s verizon problem, not iphone. I use data on calls all the time on ATT.

    • anonymous

      12/05/2013 at 3:50 am

      That’s not an Apple issue. It’s an inherent fault of CDMA networks (which Verizon uses). The only way to do simultaneous data and voice on Verizon’s network is to add a second antenna, which would require a redesign of the handset and add cost. And Apple is probably precluded from charging more for the Verizon version than the AT&T version, so why would they do that?

  4. wierd guy

    09/11/2013 at 6:01 pm

    apple are such assholes omg just put everything you have out already i bet they know what the iphone is gonna be jesus

  5. Zuni Carlton Smith

    09/11/2013 at 9:34 pm

    USA is winning the war of smartphones. Korea won’t hold for much long.
    Even if Apple is sinking, the government will bail it out. Not something that Korean government will do for one of its companies!! :p

    • Harsh area

      09/12/2013 at 4:58 am

      What’s wrong with you dude! Go to war with someone!

    • flamingarmor

      09/20/2013 at 3:04 pm

      You have to be stupid to believe that the government will bail out a company… Countries make money on companies that are being successful and innovative. If apple were to go under, it would have no value to the US, and giving them a free cash boost will be a waste of tax. Go take a business course!

      • dookiebird24

        09/23/2013 at 2:21 pm

        yeah flamingarmor, that’s exactly why they bailed out car companies and such during the recession. They would definitely bailout the company, even though it doesn’t help out GDP, it increases profits and money coming into the US.

      • Sam Sam

        10/17/2013 at 1:01 pm

        Really? The kind of your lot seem so smart when you tell others to go take courses. You do realize that for generations people relied on experience and life courses, before your academical courses came in place. That’s not to say which is better over the other.
        Back to bailouts, try again, the US government has and will do it again (Car manufacturer, Financial Institutions). I work for a Financial Institution (Corporate Banking) and I know a lot of how the last bailout worked out. Supposedly it was aimed to help the consumers, ha ha, good joke. And for other companies it doesn’t bail out, it just makes and puts out laws that help them in many different ways. The government is way more involved in these so called free capitalistic corporations than you’d like to think, or want them to be.

  6. Joe Larsen

    09/15/2013 at 7:37 pm

    “Serious Camera Upgrades
    Ignoring media trends, Apple also choose not to introduce a seriously advanced camera in the iPhone 5S. Meanwhile Nokia’s Lumia 1020 Windows Phone and many the Samsung Galaxy Camera all have ways of enabling photo-capturing features that no one other than someone using a point-and-shoot camera would expect.”

    Well somebody watch the apple keynote. Bigger pixels better adjusting, brighter picture, they go on to say why they didn’t add more pixels.

    Ps, Is anyone else having trouble with this leave a reply box (esp. when typing a long message.)?

    • Jeffery Thrasher

      09/15/2013 at 9:24 pm

      I agree

    • Will.I.Am.Not

      09/18/2013 at 6:06 am

      Joe they didn’t go to a better camera to keep costs down…that “explanation” during the keynote was just their BS to keep all the iSheep in rank.

      • Anthony

        09/23/2013 at 1:52 pm

        The new camera is seriously advanced. Why would Apple ever need to keep up with a Niche product such as the Lumia 1020 or the Galexy Camera? What normal person is really going to need such a camera? The iPhone 5S makes taking great pictures really easy, and that’s all regular people really need in a smartphone.
        Also that true tone flash is a pretty advanced feature, I’d say.

  7. Joe Larsen

    09/15/2013 at 7:43 pm

    “All-New Design
    Since Apple introduced the iPhone 5 last year, users were not expecting a significantly update with this phone’s design, and Apple didn’t throw them a wild card. Although its new fingerprint reader/home button design is completely different from devices that proceeded it, that’s the only major difference in form. There are some new color options.”

    There is two new phones 5s and 5c. The 5s is twice as fast as the 5 and has a 64 bit A7 chip and a C7 chip making its graphics much better while using much less energy. Little update?… more like 2 iPhone 5′s stuffed into one.

    • Crazy Phil

      09/18/2013 at 5:52 am

      He said change in Form Joe

    • AuntHelen3386

      09/18/2013 at 5:57 am

      Joe obviously doesn’t know what Form means.

  8. commenter

    09/16/2013 at 10:44 pm

    “No data and voice on Verizon.”
    On AT&T the iPhone can in fact talk and surf at the same time. It looks at though this is an issue on Verizon’s end, not Apple’s.

  9. Nope

    09/17/2013 at 7:25 am

    If you want everything in the list above, I don’t think you want an iPhone anyway?

  10. Reese

    09/17/2013 at 1:24 pm

    These are all stupid trends that other phones came up with to try and compete with the iPhone. The screen size is perfect, it’s ergonomic and comfortable to use unlike these fad-ridden galaxy notes. Those things are huge and a burden to carry around. The design is beautiful, streamlined, familiar, and is characteristic of an iPhone, I would hate it if it changed too much. Yes, a better camera would be nice, but the camera isn’t really bad to begin with. Only turbo nerds who have nothing better to do than sit at home on their desktops, complain about the camera. If you have half a brain you can take stunning photos with the iPhone. Just check out Instagram. As for companion devices? The iPhone is a leader and while it has followers, it does not need “companion devices” to make it better. It has everything it needs. If Apple is going to come out with something like the google glasses or a tech watch then they will be stand alone products. But in true Apple fashion, I don’t think that will happen. Anything new they come up with will in fact be new and unique to anything Microsoft or any other company has since produced. Im an Apple fan for life, and I love everything they do , the way THEY do it.

    • HelloJeeJoe

      09/18/2013 at 5:54 am

      Baaaaahhhh….baaaahhhhhh

  11. David Stanton

    09/17/2013 at 3:01 pm

    With the Verizon data and voice at the same time, it was a technology limitation to the radio needed to be used. Apple can’t fix Verizon.

  12. Kashif

    09/19/2013 at 5:14 pm

    Travis, dumbest thing I have read all day…do you know anything about Apple?

    • Brittany

      10/02/2013 at 11:07 pm

      Hahahaha SO TRUE though.

      I’m glad somebody said it.

      I’m really unsure of how this website hires their writers. I would be curious as to where the writers come from, and if Gotta Be Mobile even requires them to have any college-level writing experience. I highly doubt it, because most of the articles I’ve read here are full of fallacies, and even more full of bullshit. They lack direction, flow, and are extremely disorganized. What perturbs me most, however, is their lack of accuracy.

      For example, the fact that the author even makes an attempt to blame “No Simultaneous Data and Voice” on Apple and the iPhone 5s when anyone willing to do a little research knows it’s a carrier problem, not a device issue, is ridiculous and shows just how little effort the author put towards gathering accurate information for this article.

      “Apple hasn’t addressed this issue in the iPhone 5S at all.”
      * Apple hasn’t addressed this issue in regards to the iPhone 5s at all.

      And you’re damn right they haven’t, because it’s not their issue. It’s Verizon’s.

      The scary thing is that there are people like “some internet dude” who actually take these articles seriously, buying into everything the author has written. What people must remember, however, is that just like with print articles, there are going to be publications that are respectable and accurate, and those that are not.

      I would definitely put Gotta Be Mobile in the “not” category. After all, I could probably shit out a better article than this one.

  13. glitterua$$$

    09/21/2013 at 4:27 am

    I just don’t get the hype that surrounds the iphone. Samsung, LG and htc features and hardware leave the iphone 5 all in the dust yet you all pheen to get one…Is it some sort of status thing? Samsung made the a6 processor. Get real iphone is crap! Stop the cycle and force them to make real changes that consumers need and want!!!

  14. Anthony

    09/23/2013 at 1:54 pm

    That “Major Redesign” point really shouldn’t be included. It’s an ‘S’ model phone, we already knew it’d look like the iPhone 5, it’s no surprise that it looks the same.

  15. Kenny Reed

    09/23/2013 at 6:19 pm

    Not being able to talk on surf on a Verizon phone isn’t an Iphone problem, it’s a Verizon problem. Doing so would require a dual chipset. Verizon’s 4G LTE antennas can currently only transmit data, not voice signals. Their towers still have the 3G antennas to transmit calls. However, Verizon is currently rolling out their first phase of their AWS (Advanced Wireless Services) network in major markets. This will allow capable phones to surf and talk at the same time. Don’t expect this anytime soon though. I’ve been installing LTE as a subcontractor for the last three years, and they’re not even done with their 4G rollout. And yes, AWS will more than likely be known on the consumer level as 5G

  16. Anton Pugachevsky (@antonpug)

    09/23/2013 at 8:38 pm

    I mainly disagree. I think iPhone 5S is a great phone, and Apple has done a good job of not adding features that would potentially die in a year or two.

    1) What’s all the rage with the screen size? I would NEVER want my iPhone to be larger than what it already is. I prefer the 4S screen size, but why would anyone want a larger screen? That’s what a tablet’s for.

    2) No simultaneous calls + data: 100% carrier issue. iPhone 5S, just like 5, just like 4S, can work on either AT&T or Verizon, and this problem purely depends on Verizon’s CDMA network.

    3) NFC? I think that’s a a dying trend. Sure, it’s cool. But Apple has been a long proponent for using “proven” technology. NFC would be used by what…maybe 5% of all the users? If that..

    • iPhonesucks

      09/25/2013 at 6:42 pm

      NFC is used by 458 million users…

      • Brittany

        10/02/2013 at 11:08 pm

        source?

  17. Pam's7kids

    09/30/2013 at 5:59 pm

    Adroid fans are complete idiots! I love the new iphone 5s. I hear over and over we are fanboys and sheep because we love our iphones. Yet are they not ” by their own account” android sheep? I pre-ordered a ps4 for my son, I guess that makes me a ps fanboy too. Or a gta5 fan boy because I stood in line for that. Or a Black Friday sheep because I have children and want to save money and get them what they want. The only time they are mad is if you stand in line for an iphone! What a hoot to listen too the idiots.

    • Lord Shaz

      10/15/2013 at 12:57 pm

      Android is only an operating system, not a phone. Samsung sheep, maybe but Android doesn’t tell us what we are getting and not getting, the phone tells us. Se, in Android world, we have what are called ‘options’. Try it, you might lose some weight.. Dont insult me either.
      To have such a closed mind is a disability and I feel sorry for you.

      • Pamela Janes

        10/15/2013 at 1:06 pm

        Well see you must not of read the other comments from the idiots saying baa baa. You know the ones where iphone users are being called I sheep. That’s whom I was speaking of. Btw I am perfect in my weight. Check me out on Facebook. So before you go judging me and what I have and don’t have, use your brain and HMU @ Cunningham Realty in Jax Florida. My company for which I own over 100 properties and 200 apartments and condos. 9043870475 if you need a rental.

        • Pamela Janes

          10/15/2013 at 1:08 pm

          Or a job!! Because you sound like you might.

        • Lord Shaz

          10/15/2013 at 1:22 pm

          Oh no, I read them and I agree with the iSheep phrase. I dont agree with being called an idiot by someone who only just learned to speak english and who uses a phone with 5-year-old technology in it. Claiming that Android users are idiots is a little more abusive than calling iPhone consumers followers or ‘iSheep’. Get a life IMO, and a decent phone.

          BTW, wont need your job thanks, I’m a Computer Systems Engineer, work for myself.

    • Altamont

      10/21/2013 at 1:58 pm

      Oh my lord, so much to comment on…

      First, good for you! I’m so glad you like your new iToy. That doesn’t make you a sheep. I like my Galaxy with Android OS because I think it’s a superior device to the Apple alternative. C’est La vie. Enough said.

      What makes you a sheep is that you must brag about buying your unique snowflake son whatever it is he desires to prove some point. Because spoiling your kids = awesome parenting, right? Also, If you feel you must stand in lines for the newest games, Black Friday, etc., then that is the VERY definition of ‘sheep.’ This is EXACTLY what I perceive idiots to do.

      You know what’s the opposite of sheep-like behavior? ‘Patience’ and ‘fiscal responsibility.’ Try just one. Wait a few months. You might be surprised.

  18. ThatOneDude

    10/13/2013 at 9:29 pm

    Pam, I think before you insult anyone or call them idiots, you really should check your grammar and spelling. I think it’s hilarious how defensive everyone get’s of their cell phones. If you like apple you like apple, if you like android you like android. Why on earth does everyone freak out at the other person because they use a different cell phone? Both android and iOS have their pros and cons, it’s really just a matter of personal preference. Does it really matter if I were and android user and you convinced me to switch to an iPhone? Or vice versa? Haha I’m just curios where an individual would benefit from someone else’s changing of OS’.

    • ThatOneDude

      10/13/2013 at 9:31 pm

      And yes my spelling was awful there too haha! Maybe I should have proof read!

    • Pam

      10/14/2013 at 3:39 am

      Well I have only been speaking English for 2 years, so if my grammar is not up to your liking, then learn my native language in 2 years speak 100% accurate and then we will see how great thou art. @thatonedude

  19. some internet dude

    09/11/2013 at 5:42 pm

    Wow cool you think she can afford an iPhone now.

  20. phillip

    09/15/2013 at 1:58 pm

    i think maybe your buddys half-sister should go back to school cause $67 x (A few Hours) does not equal $17048

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