What if I told you that in 90 seconds you could figure out what was inside the iPhone 7? Well, you can!
— iFixit (@iFixit) September 16, 2016
Yesterday, September 16, iFixit, “a wiki-based site that teaches people how to fix almost anything,” published a lengthy, descriptive article to their website and a video to their YouTube channel showcasing a teardown of the iPhone 7. The video, which quickly details the process of disassembling Apple’s latest flagship phone, displays the improvements Apple made to the iPhone 7 over the iPhone 6s and iPhone 6 models. The article goes in-depth on the parts inside the iPhone, the differences between the iPhone 7 and the iPhone 6s and the iPhone 6 models, and the tools you’ll need to do the teardown yourself. (There’s also a step-by-step walkthrough of disassembly and reassembly, so you don’t ruin your phone. Hopefully.)
For starters, the iPhone 7 is powered by a 1960 mAh battery. This is up from the 1715 mAh battery in the iPhone 6s, and the 1810 mAh battery in the iPhone 6. (Comparatively, the iPhone 5 had a 1440 mAh battery, and the iPhone 5s had 1560 mAh battery.) Yes, the iPhone 6 had a bigger battery than the iPhone 6s: Apple had to make their 3D Touch and Taptic engine technology fit into the “s” model phones, and something had to give, so it was the battery that got the short end of the stick. Although the battery isn’t a huge jump, a mere 150 mAh, it still should give the iPhone 7 an extra hour of battery life. And, if you’re like me, scrolling through Facebook and Twitter all day, that extra hour could make all the difference in the world. Apple touts that battery life could be significantly more than that, but we’ll find out in real-world situations whether the battery in the iPhone 7 provides more than just an additional hour of juice.
Another noteworthy change is the rear-view camera. Yes, as rumored and confirmed by Apple at their iPhone event earlier this month (September 7), the iPhone 7 boasts an impressive 12 megapixel, f/1.8 aperture rear-view camera. This is up from the 8 megapixel, f/2.2 aperture camera on the iPhone 6, and the 12 megapixel, f/2.2 aperture camera on the iPhone 6s. (In comparison, the iPhone 5 had an 8 megapixel, f/2.4 aperture camera, and the iPhone 5s had an 8 megapixel, f/2.2 aperture camera, same as the iPhone 6.) This bump in both megapixel and aperture will increase pixel density so photos look crisper, allow more light inside the camera so it performs better in low-light situations, capture detail more accurately, and balance color. Furthermore, the iPhone 7 includes optical image stabilization, a feature present on the iPhone 6 Plus and iPhone 6s Plus, but missing from both the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6s.
A few other things to note are the home button, Apple’s new A10 Fusion chip, and the stereo speakers at the top and bottom of the phone. First, the iPhone 7’s home button. It’s the same, circular design as every iPhone before it, with one notable exception: it doesn’t actually move. Yes, because of the Taptic engine inside the iPhone 7, Apple was able to do away with a physical moving button; much like the trackpad on all new MacBooks, the iPhone 7’s home button clicks at you. Second, the iPhone 7’s A10 Fusion chip. This chip, designed in-house by Apple and manufactured by Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC), is said to have 40 percent greater CPU performance and 50 percent greater GPU performance than that of the A9 chip seen in the iPhone 6s. Third, the iPhone 7’s stereo speakers. These speakers are supposed to be 50 percent louder than the speakers found in the iPhone 6s.
Finally, we arrive at the headphone jack. With Apple omitting such a ubiquitous piece of technology, you’d have to wonder what they put in its place. Well, if you look at the bottom of the iPhone 7, it looks like Apple replaced the 3.5mm headphone jack with another speaker grill. Great, better sound quality! However, iFixit reveals that the speaker grill is actually fake, and what lies behind that is a piece of plastic. Yes, you get a microphone that traditionally sits in that spot, but underneath that microphone is a piece of plastic. According to an update from Apple, that piece of plastic is actually a barometric vent, a measurer that “[equalizes] the internal and atmospheric pressures in order to have an accurate altimeter.” In other words, it helps measure and calculate altitude more accurately. Now I can know the exact height I’m at when I’m skydiving!
— Dieter Bohn (@backlon) September 16, 2016
You can watch the entire teardown above, or read the teardown in its entirety here.
[Featured Image by Richard Vogel/AP Images]