19 applications optimised for the iPhone 5s [UPDATED]

Apple’s latest flagship, the iPhone 5s, hits South Africa this Friday the 15th of November. It boasts a revised 8-megapixel camera, for taking even better photos than before. It also has a fingerprint sensor, to make your phone more secure around your friends, yet easier to unlock. And then there’s the blazingly fast new processor inside, the A7, paired up with the M7 motion co-processor.

Those two invisible upgrades will not just make things happen faster, but they also bring some new technologies into the fold, allowing developers to create better apps than before. Expect improved graphics in games, faster calculations in maths-intensive applications, as well as new effects in video and audio apps. Apps that use the M7 co-processor will now track your steps in the background, and use the iPhone’s sensors in all new ways.

If you’ve got a shiny new iPhone 5s arriving this Friday, we’ve done all the leg work for you. Rather than scour the web looking for apps to test out everything, here are the 19 apps you can download right now to load on your new iPhone.



The M7 motion co-processor takes all of the iPhone’s motion sensors – the accelerometer, gyroscope, and compass – and processes the data separately. This means that the A7 processor doesn’t get bogged down (or drain battery). Since the launch of the 5s, just about two months ago, a flurry of fitness apps have been updated to support the M7 chip. The chip logs all the data in the background, and when you fire up the apps they get updated with information about how far you walked, how many steps you took, and how many calories – approximately – were burned.

There are six fitness apps on the local iTunes Store at the moment (the Nike Move+ app is only available in the US, at the moment). Each is capable of tracking all the statistics mentioned above. Which one you use depends simply on how it plugs into your existing routine. Some, like MotionX, will also track your sleep – though that does require having an iPhone in bed…

1) Strava Run – Free

2) Argus – R15.99

3) RunKeeper – Free

4) MotionX 24/7 – R7.99

5) WeatherRun – R15.99

6) Pedometer++ – Free



With twice the graphics power of the iPhone 5, the 5s has a penchant for pushing prettier pixels. Alliteration aside, you can’t just expect existing games to look better – they have to be updated to take advantage of the additional horsepower in the 5s. To date, only a handful have been tweaked for more lush visuals, so best get those first to see what the hardware is really capable of.

1) Infinity Blade III – R56.99

Hack and slash with swords in the second sequel of this successful franchise. It’s been tuned for the 64-bit A7 processor, and the graphics have also been given a good ol’ lick of paint.

2) Call of Duty: Strike Team – R56.99

More graphical goodness in this mobile version of the award-winning Call of Duty franchise. This first-person shooter is a good way to get your fix while you’re away from your PlayStation or Xbox, and now has visuals that won’t leave you wanting.

3) Sky Gamblers: Cold War – R39.99

Sword too old-fashioned? Guns just so yesterday? Well, get into some planes and reign the skies. Sky Gamblers: Cold War has uprated visuals for the new A7 processor, so the skies have never looked prettier.



1) Pcalc – R79.99

For R80 you’d expect something special, and the optimised-for-iPhone 5s Pcalc is just that. Look, it’s not going to be on top of everybody’s must-have list of apps, but there’s no better calculator for iOS.

2) Pages – Free

Apple’s own word processor has been updated for iOS 7, and part of that upgrade is 64-bit support for the new iPhone. Create your documents, open and save files on iCloud, and do almost everything you’d need a word processor to do on a phone.

3) Keynote – Free

If really into creating presentations, Keynote – also part of Apple’s iWork suite – will fit the bill. It’s almost as powerful as its desktop cousin, and the interface is surprisingly usable on the company iPhone display.

4) Numbers – Free

The final part of the iWork suite has also been updated for iOS 7 and the new A7 processor. It can be a bit tedious using the iPhone for spreadsheets, but it’s a) free, and b) better than nothing.



1) Sing! – Free

The creators of this karaoke app say that they were unable to get the real-time audio effects working on any platform, until now. The 64-bit processor in the iPhone 5s, they say, lets them add effects such as singing in the shower, in a big hall, or even sports stadiums. But the powerful chip can’t change your tune, if you suck.

2) djay 2 – R79.99

As with Sing!, djay 2 gains the ability to apply audio effects in real time, without delaying the music-making process. This means more mixing, and less time spent waiting to find out if your djay skills were wasted on a composition.

3) iMovie – Free

As with the iWork suite, Apple’s also updated the iLife bundle. First up is iMovie, the video editor, which gets an interface overhaul for iOS7, and takes advantage of the 64-bit capabilities of the A7 processor.

4) iPhoto – Free

If you don’t like the Photos app in iOS, iPhoto is the next best thing. It lets you manage and arrange your photo albums, as well as apply effects, edit photos, and share your creations.

5) Garageband – Free

Garageband is one of the easiest music-creation apps to use, and it’s been given a 64-bit facelift for iOS7 and the iPhone 5s. There’s the ability to record music, arrange dynamic compositions, and even sync up multiple iPhones and iPads to start a virtual band.

6) TruSloMo – Free

A must-have app for 5s owners. This will let you export the phone’s slow-motion, 120fps video for use in Instagram, YouTube, and other video-sharing services. Without it, other applications just see the video at regular-speed.


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