Apple iPhone 5

Tested at £699

Faster, lighter, bigger, better: iPhone 5 is the best iPhone yet


Apple make great products that last. The trouble with the mobile phone industry is that it is so fast paced that phone consumers will never really get that.

I am still on the old 3GS, it does everything I need it too and more and will continue to do so for years to come, just like my MacBookPro and other Apple products.

Personally I think that £699 for a phone is taking the EDITED, we are approaching the £1000 mark very fast. It's a telephone, people need to get things in perspective.

Every single user review, even fanboys , think the audio is worse on the 5 than the 4s


Except What HiFi.


Try listening to it rather than copy and pasting a press release

Really? Link me up, interested to read them.

KT66 wrote:
Try listening to it

We did.

Large amounts of customer feedback I have had over this last weekend on build quality issues regarding Iphone 5, scratches and bezel chipping.


Apple issued a statement on this basically saying, "its aluminium, it will scratch, its just normal"....Hmm?

I am a bit peeved to be honest as i got one on launch day and was very much underwhelmed with my latest Apple acquisition.

I hope I can offload it soon.

I too am a little perplexed by the WHF rating here. The downsides they mention are, for me, pretty fundamental flaws. Any other brand reviewed that presented those flaws would certainly drop a star in the final rating. Then on top of this when you compare raw specs (as many in these comments have done) the new iphone 5 is decidedly average.
No doubt that when WHF get their hands on a Lumia 920, which is packed with truly innovative stuff, especially around the photography side and the mapping and location based applications, it will no doubt drop a star because it's a bit chunky.
I've always trusted WHF for HiFi reviews but these days I feel that their reviews around the mobile phone arena are a little off the mark.

I agree with you in ways but it comes down to personal prefference. I could say the size of the S3 screen is to big for me and the plastic feel to it isn't good enough, so its only going to get 4 stars BUT most people looked beyond that and are just taken away with the rest of the phone ( i do hope to try one but it will proberbly be the S10 by the time i have the money ) 

The same has happened with iPhone , its had a couple of downsides and these will be ironed out and will end up being a good all round solid phone 

Getting to the 920 i really hope it stands its ground but i'm pretty sure it will have a problem or two which will get highlighted and drop a star because it will get to compared to the S3 and iPhone 5


Which downsides do you see as fundamental? Our fundamentals are still sound and picture quality, plus build and ease of use, and the iPhone 5 excels in these areas. 

I'm not sure that the iphone 5 picture quality is a major leap forward, especially when compared to peers. WHF youselves now state that the UI lacks wow factor, which surely must contribute to ease of use / usability? I also believed that what you get for the price was also a fundamental of WFH and as is stated in this review, price is highlighted as a downside. Therefore I personally beleive that the the iphone 5 is not excelling in all of the fundamental areas you mention. But that's the great thing about reader comments - we're allowed our opinion too. Smile

We don't mind these constructive opinions , they are a good read. its when its a personal opinion with no constructive backing e.g its not an S3 so its @£$% doesn't help anyone.


Long time iPhone user until my contract ran out in May on my iPhone 4. Couldn't wait at the time until the launch of the 5 so I picked up an S3 on its launch due to all the hype.

Was very surprised how good this phone is. Loads of features but after 10 days I sent it back to O2 with lag and freezing issues. Decided aginst getting a new S3 and went back to my old iPhone 4 because my whole house is full of Apple gear. Wife has an 4S, we have Apple TV, 2 iPads, 5 different iPods; (touch, 3 classics, nano) going back years in the house and also hooked up in our cars etc but for me, the fundamental issue is that I couldn't sync with iTunes Match with my S3 or control Apple TV with my S3. Should have thought of that before I upgraded to the Sammy.

Anyhow, picked up the 5 last Friday. Very impressed, not a huge improvement vs my 4, but some nice added features, especiallly better camera, and phone clarity seems to be noticeably better than my old 4. iPhone 5 Siri an improvement on my wife's 4S version. iPhone 5 is ultra fast even with 3G, compared to my 4. Nicely made but phone does lack the wow factor compared to when I upgraded to the 4 from the iphone 3 a couple of years ago. Apple has caught up with the comp, rather than taking it onto another level like they did in previous years.

To put it simply, iPhone doesn't do as much as the S3, but it does what little it does better (ios vs Android) Smoother interface, (maps are poor though vs Google and S3 version for the time being as I read this evening that IOS will revert to google maps in December) Predictive text much easier to use in ios vs ics. Siri vs the s3 voice recognition is in a different league with Siri far, far superior although the s3 had a cool text to call feature by lifting handset to ear when receiving a text message. Cameras on par but I prefer the multi shot function on the s3. 5 edges night time/low light photos. Web browsing to S3, no issues with flash sites etc etc. Liked the widgets available in ICS. Video playback superb on the larger S3 screen. No issues with s3 size. Not too big. More apps in iOS but hardly any taking advantage of new screen size.

Summerise as I'm rambling now. If you're not locked into Apple products like myself then I would choose the s3 over the iPhone due to features, screen size, flexibility, better battery life, external memory options. Build quality to iPhone as the back cover of the s3 feels and looks very cheap. Fact I could use my blackberry work charger to charge my S3 was a bonus.

Iphone 5 Lightning adaptor is cool, and charges the phone very quickly although it means I need to start buying some new cables, adaptors for the house and car. More money!

Both great phones, but Apple in my opinion no longer ahead of competition. Now if you could put iOS into the S3, which was built by Apple... that would be the dream ticket.

Yep, agree with most of that.

One thing the Iphone5 does is probably kill off the Lumia920 before it even comes out. The fact that the 920 weighs a hefty 185g compared to the Iphones 112g.


Probably wont affect the htc/Samsung win8 phones as they weigh a more acceptable 130g with their big 4.8inch screens.


But the 920 is looking too heavy - I wouldnt consider a phone that heavy compared to the competition.

I agree with you there AnotherJoe 

I guess thats the down of making the casing out of the materials that they have made the 920 from and i would assume thats why phones like the Galaxy and Note 1 & 2 would be way to heavy if they did the same.


or maybe it's simply got a more decent battery compared to competition. horses for courses...

The S3 is just too big for putting in to pockets i think, a lad at work never has it on him as he puts it away in his draw because its just too big to fit into his overall top pocket, pointless, though his draw is always buzzing because he is missing all his calls because of this!

Apple have their phone sizes just right in comparison to the S3 and they are just wizzards at this game and many other things for that matter, there back up service is great too!

*BUMP* Yell

Any WHF?S&V reviewers notice if the iPhone 5's atenna is better at picking up a cell signal indoors, compared to the 4 or 4S?

Ta Smile

In terms of picking up mobile data connection it seems to be stronger compared to previous gen iPhones but in our office, which isn't great for O2 phone connection, it still isn't great... Wandering around our office I would normally have trouble holding a call on my mobile and the iPhone 5 seems no different. Will report back further as we use it more. Outside in good reception and at home where I get good reception, it has been fine.

Haven't used it myself, will ask those who have.

The iphone 5 is vastly inferior to the S3 in so many ways.

Take the blinkers of sheeples.

Just go get the S3.

It will pound the 5 even more once the Jellybean upgrade comes in 3 weeks as well.

No contest.


Edit: I too am baffled by the 5 stars from WHF.....too scared to be honest for fear of getting pushed out?

DrF.mbe wrote:
I too am baffled by the 5 stars from WHF.....too scared to be honest for fear of getting pushed out?

Getting pushed out of what, exactly?

Have you used an iPhone 5 DrF.mbe ? Atleast if i comment on an S2 / S3 or a Note i can say i have tried one and i think they are all very good phones but then it comes down to a personal choice what people want, 

It seems there are a few anoraks in the S3 ranks to a point they have no idea how much of a anorak they are, you fail to even put a good point of view across 

God i can't wait for the 820 & 920 come out to listen to all the S3 owners tell us how much better there phone is 

Not only that if you take a good look around the hole web on reviews with the new iPhone everyone seems to feel the same and gives the same rating, so its not WHF being biased 

Have you used an iPhone 5 DrF.mbe ?

Yes I have indeed, I gave my Wife it on Friday and I took her S3 ( The Sat nav works on the Android, and I had to travel to Newcastle to do a technology seminar). I have owned a 4 and 4s previously as well. I would consider that I know the Apple brand reasonably well, having bought a variety of products long before a lot of people even considered Apple products to be worth buying.


God i can't wait for the 820 & 920 come out to listen to all the S3 owners tell us how much better there phone is.

Why wait?....I promise you now it will not match up to the S3 given the current literature and smirking glances I see. 


Not only that if you take a good look around the hole web

I am going to presume that you mean WHOLE and not  HOLE.


Andrew, do you really think that 5 stars is justified?........REALLY?

And just for the people who do not quite grasp how forums work....this section is entitled YOUR OPINION.


I hope that helps.

Just straight off the bat... The iPhone 5 is faster, interface is cleaner and more intuitive, it sounds better, it's better made. The S3 is great in many ways but the iPhone 5 is comfortably a five-star product based on our standard review criteria.

DrF.mbe wrote:
Andrew, do you really think that 5 stars is justified?........REALLY?

Not a clue – haven't even used one, only seen at a distance the review sample kicking around last week.

S3 is not like the iPhone, which is a good thing and a bad thing IMO. The iPhone 5's build is second to exactly none on the market. It's superb, sublime and beautiful as a piece of hardware. The S3 feels like a kids toy in comparison.


However, the S3 has a very nice large screen which lots will love and Android feel more innovative nowadays. 


For those like me who have a lot of iOS devices, the iPhone 5 is an amazing upgrade....bit it feels like the next iPhone had best be something more than that to keep Apple above the water-line in the fast moving market.


Good review guys, got to be 5 stars with a phone of this quality

As I said earlier, even if Apple makes a trash then WHF will give that too a five stars, where is your principle of price per pound ratings!

Its 200 pounds more expensive then S3, have no SD slot or NFC, the screen resolution is not as high as S3, maps are work in progress, apps still doesn't take advantage of full screen.

iOs6 still doesn't give lot of custmozation compared to Android.

New connector brings lot of headache and have people have to pay 25$$ for adaptor.

Come on WHF either admit you are biased towards Apple or stick to your rating principles.

Zubkabera you just don't get it, 

It's the hole package you get with the iPhone , the quality and how everything works and intergrates with each other.

Firstly an S3 for £330 sim free , that would be cheap , SD slot isn't needed as everything can be downloaded and deleted as needed on the go , screen resolution ? like you'r going to notice 

Apps well it is new so things will be sorted over time , the iOS well you can have all the customisation you like but its only now Andriod can say they have a good OS though its still not as solid as any of the iOS though i do agree its getting a little boring now.


The maps well i haven't used yet and looking at Apples past they will continue to try to improve things and if it doesn't work they will drop it and come up with a simple but affective map solution

The new connector isn't the end of the world though some will find it annoying but you talk like its a problem for everyone ( i'm not fussed in the slightest ) but then you know what you need before you buy the iPhone or Touch , so you have a choice weather to buy the new products or not too or go elsewhere . 

Have you checked out the quality of the iPhone 5 , i thought the 4s was good and even that still makes most phones look cheap and i hear the 5 is even better.

WHF aren't biased to Apple products either though i feel they missed alot of points with Apple TV which WHF gave only 3 stars, If you have an iPhone , Touch or iPad or even a mac you can watch anything on you'r Apple Tv and every other site has not given it a lower score than 4 out of 5. 

But this seems to be a problem when you start reviewing things including people like yourself, you judge things for what you think it should be rather than what it is.

My advice enjoy you'r products you own and try not to worry about other people and if that product is going to work in there lives because it won't work in yours



Thanks for the comments but we're certainly not biased. Half the team use non-Apple phones as it happens. Pricing is tricky for smartphones, yes it is expensive but many people won't pay the list price due to contracts or upgrades. Regardless, if the sound quality is the best around and the picture pretty damn close, then surely it's half way to five stars already? An SD card slot will be a problem for some but I'd wager for most people it's not an issue. And how often do you use NFC? Or indeed use your S3 with any sort of dock? As for iOS 6, it has strengths and weaknesses, just like Android. Customisation is a weakness but ease of use and choice of apps is a strength, not to mention the speed of the interface.

People will have different preferences but we're confident this is every bit a five-star phone.

Any WHF?S&V reviewers notice if the iPhone 5's atenna is better at picking up a cell signal indoors, compared to the 4 or 4S?

Ta Smile

Whilst my wife with 4S had no problems with antennae issues, I had a few when I borrowed it...but she is left handed and I am not. My 5 (yes I queued) has no such issues even here in deepest Norfolk where masts are few and far between. Signal strength indoors is definitely better.

Regarding the iPhone 5, the build quality is simply amazing - almost jewel like and just better all round. It actually feels like it has been carved from a solid block rather than assembled from parts, almost like they sucked out all the space from the inside. Mine had a minor scuff mark above the screen(i had to look really close to see it) which disappeared when polished with optical cleaner.

The one improvement I really like - browser speed is much improved as is app loading.

Overall, I'm very pleased with my purchase.

Nice review. There have been reports of Yelp's local business directory (UK) being outdated. So Siri has improved, but not perfect yet. Any thoughts?

It's certainly improved as it just didn't work for local business searches before but it is still in 'beta' and so isn't perfect. For Italian restaurants near me it had around 75% but didn't have a couple I know. But it's fast, shows results sensibly and then you can click through neatly to the business and get details, maps etc. Similarly searching for football fixtures it pulls up Premier League fixtures no problem but then struggled when I asked for Division 2. So you get the idea: definitely an improvement and genuinely useful but can still improve.

First you said 

"The iPhone 5 has a 4in, 16:9 aspect ratio screen, taller than the iPhone 4S and its 3.5in screen, despite being lighter and slimmer in depth."


Then you said

"Now a 4.5in Retina screen, the iPhone 5 has a 1136 x 640 resolution with a decent 326 pixels per inch (PPI)."


Make up your mind will you? Tongue out

Oops, late night subbing error, now corrected. Embarassed

I had a quick play with a mates phone today and I must say not huge differance to my 4S but one of the most well built phones there is.

"and is 9.3mm in depth, compared to the previous generation at 7.6mm."

Need to reverse those numeros....Smile

Good spot, thanks. Now corrected.

In their legal spat with Samsung even Apple said the Galaxy S3 is 'just like' the iPhone - so why not just buy one instead and save some money?


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