At the end of last night’s iPhone 5s teardown, the iFixit team still wasn’t sure who made the chips inside the latest iOS device, or where the brand-new M7 was, even. There was a lot of speculation as to who made the A7, Apple’s new, faster powerhouse of a main processing unit, as well.
That’s ancient history, now, as reverse-engineering and security firm, Chipworks, de-capped the various chips on the iPhone 5s logic board to find out precisely what’s what.
Ever since Apple first introduced the Lightning adapter, much attention has been given to the mysterious chip used inside every Lightning Cable. Some speculated that the chip’s purpose was to merely “flip” the path the digital signals take from pin topin depending upon which orientation he cable was plugged into a device, while others have insisted that it is, in fact, a security chip meant to thwart counterfeit Lightning accessory makers.
What’s the truth? It looks like the chip inside every Lightning cable is a security chip, but it’s a simple one, less advanced even than the security chips you would find in today’s printer cartridges! And since those can be faked, so can Lightning.
Have you ever wondered how your iPhone knows up from down, or when you’re shaking it? It’s all because of the tiny accelerometer chip inside the device, but how does it work? It’s not like the iPhone’s got a metal ball bearing rolling between two points in there, so what gives?
As it turns out, there’s actually a lot of crazy cool tech in there.
When Apple first debuted the new 1080p Apple TV in March, they said they’d brought their set-top box up to spec with the rest of the industry by including what they called a “single-core variant” of the iPad 2 and iPhone 4S’s A5 processor.
But how is it an A5 processor if only has one core? The answer is that technically, the A5 inside the Apple TV is still a dual-core chip, but one of them’s a dud.
We suspected as much, but the inquisitive engineers at Chipworks have confirmed that the camera inside the new iPad is indeed the same one found in the iPhone 4. The optics, as we already knew, come from the iPhone 4S’ camera.
Chipworks says that “It is very likely that Apple has recycled the 5MP back illuminated CMOS image sensor from the iPhone 4,” — the Omnivision OV5650.
When you ask most iPhone 4 owners why they didn’t get Siri in a software update for their devices when the almost-identical iPhone 4S came out, the common answer is extremely cynical: Siri is the arbitrary, software-only feature that Apple decided to limit to the iPhone 4S simply to differentiate it from the iPhone 4 in marketing,
The truth? Apple may not be as cynical as all that. In fact, according to a new report from a chips analyst, it all comes down to special noise-reduction circuitry unique to the iPhone 4S’s A5 chip.