Reports suggest that the iPhone 5S may have serious issues with its advanced motion sensors.
When the iPhone 5S launched on September 20, Apple pointed to its brand new M7 coprocessor as a revolution in mobile motion-sensing technology.
However, just two weeks on we’re hearing reports of inaccuracies with the device’s motion and orientation-sensing capabilities. There’s an extensive forum thread over on MacRumours detailing the experiences of numerous iPhone 5S owners.
Sure enough, according to a follow-up report over on Gizmodo, the iPhone 5S’s sensors are noticeably off. The site conducted tests to ascertain the extent of these issues using Apple’s own motion-sensing apps.
One careful look at the spirit level tool revealed that the iPhone 5S was two to three degrees out when oriented according to a good old fashioned physical equivalent. Other users had reported a four to six degree slip.
The same test with an iPhone 5 revealed that the problem was specific to the new model, and could be a hardware issue rather than an easy-to-fix software one.
Another test using Apple’s gyroscope tool showed up a similar three degree discrepancy in the iPhone 5S. This would have considerable repercussions for games that utilise the iPhone’s gyroscope for movement, such as the Real Racing series.
Sure enough, another test involving Real Racing 3 on an iPhone 5S showed that the cars naturally tended to steer left when the device was perfectly level.
The iPhone 5S compass app was also shown to be out by as much as 10 degrees when compared to the readings of a physical compass.
Given that the degree of error varies from user to user, it’s possible that the iPhone 5S handsets aren’t being calibrated properly during construction. It could be that a simple software update isn’t a viable fix.
Is this the latest Apple gaffe following Antennagate and the Apple Maps debacle?
Read More: iPhone 5S problems and pitfalls