iFixIt teardown: praise for Apple’s iPhone 14

Repair service provider iFixIt has opened up the new standard iPhone model 14. The result was that Apple makes maintenance easier in some places.

iPhone 14 in a teardown. (Image: iFixIt)

Apple has significantly improved the repairability of the iPhone 14. That’s the conclusion reached by repair service provider iFixIt, which has now completed its first teardown of the new standard iPhone model for 2022. Apple has redesigned the inner workings more than it has since 2017’s iPhone X, repair experts say. “The best feature of the iPhone 14 is one Apple didn’t tell you about,” said iFixIt CEO Kyle Wiens.

In practice, this means that Apple has made changes in the device architecture that amount to a “secret redesign”. Interestingly, however, this only affects the iPhone 14; the iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max are said to be unchanged here. Anyone who wants an iPhone “that really lasts a long time” is better off with the iPhone 14. One of the innovations is that the iPhone 14 (and probably also the iPhone 14 Plus, which will be available from October 7th ) has a directly removable back for the first time since the iPhone 4S.

In the event of damage to this glass surface, the “iPhone Rear System” no longer has to be laboriously replaced, which contains countless other components and thus produces a lot of recycling scrap, although only a glass replacement would be necessary. The fact that the back panel can be easily removed was already noticed during the first tests of the iPhone 14; hobbyists in China had also noticed this. Other repairs are also made easier because you no longer have to dismantle the display immediately.

But the screen is now easier to remove, as iFixIt found out. This is only “secured” with two screws and a maximum of two connections. “Apple should have made a big announcement here,” Wiens said. The new structure is reminiscent of a sandwich made of the display, a so-called midframe housing with the main components, and finally the rear glass. The metal midframe housing supports all the structures necessary for the internal design, according to iFixIt.

The radio components have also been revised. At the same time, iFixIt also found improved water resistance due to the improved structure (Ingress Protection). The US models actually still have room for the now omitted SIM card slot. Qualcomm’s Snapdragon X65 is installed as a modem – including satellite capability. Finally, iFixIt comes to the conclusion that the hardware gets a repairability score of 7 out of 10 points – the first time since the iPhone 7 the score was so high. There is still criticism of Apple’s nailing down of components when they are exchanged – as a participant in the Self Service Repair Program, you have to have components unlocked.

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