Monday, September 23, 2013

Inside the iPhone 5s

The Register reports: [edited]

The gleeful geeks at iFixit and ChipWorks have torn apart Apple's latest flagship iPhone, the 5s, and inside they found a lot of glue and a few surprises.

"This is an 's' version, which means it's speedier, more secure, superior – or similar – to its predecessor," said iFixit's Gwendolyn Gay in a video accompanying the teardown.

In addition to the new A7 processor, the fingerprint sensor, the improved camera, and the sensor-wrangling M7 chip – is a higher-capacity 3.8V battery than its predecessor: 5.92Wh and 1560mAh, compared to the iPhone 5's 5.45Wh, 1440mAh power source.

ChipWorks found that the M7 processor is from NXP Semiconductors. The A7 processor is manufactured by Samsung

Its fingerprint sensor is a bunch of very small capacitors that creates an 'image' of the ridges on your finger, based on technology from AuthenTec, acquired by Apple in July 2012.

Being avid advocates of the "Right to Repair", iFixit rates each product it tears down with a 1-to-10 reparability score. Their rating for the iPhone 5s gives that "s" a few more possible interpretations: "six" is the score, which makes it "sorta" repairable.

The benefits of the power-saving sensor-management capabilities of the M7 chip won't be fully realized until developers take advantage of its CoreMotion API, and the advantages of the A7's 64-bit ARMv8 architecture offers developers – including Apple's – a goodly amount of potential for the future.

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