iPhone 5S suffers with wonky accelerometer issue

The Apple iPhone 5S is suffering from a wonky accelerometer that could require every app to recalibrate itself.

Is your Apple iPhone 5S a bit dizzy? That could be because of a wonky accelerometer.

For the latest iPhone, Apple has switched suppliers for the orientation and movement-tracking accelerometer, adding a Bosch Sensortech BMA220 and ditching the previous STMicroelectronics sensor. According to motion experts Realitycap, responding to assorted complaints from iPhone owners, that's where things get bosched up.

To cut a long story short, the accuracy of the accelerometer is measured by bias and variance, and the new part has a greater bias -- which means accuracy can potentially be way off. The solution? For each app to include a calibration process when you first fire it up, to measure and correct for your phone's specific inaccuracy.

It's not the first bug attributed to the 5S, unveiled recently alongside the slightly cheaper iPhone 5C . Owners report the 5S has a propensity to turn blue and keel over, bringing back memories of the legendary Microsoft ' blue screen of death .'

But despite the bugs -- and the fact the 5S is a whole chunk o'change pricier than its plastic-backed contemporary -- experts say 5S sales could be double those of the 5C .


Apple has yet to respond to the 5S accelemoter issue. We're due to hear from Apple next week at its announcement on 22 October , expected to reveal a new iPad and more on OS X Mavericks .

Have you had any problems with your iPhone 5S or 5C? Tell me about it in the comments or stagger to our Facebook page.

About the author

Rich Trenholm is a senior editor at CNET where he covers everything from phones to bionic implants. Based in London since 2007, he has travelled the world seeking out the latest and best consumer technology for your enjoyment.


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