Published in Mobiles

Apple banishes Qualcomm, Samsung from Garden of Eden

by on24 September 2018

Basically iPhone is last year’s design purged of those who refused discounts

IFixit has voided the warranty on the new iPhone XS and found that other than the fact it is purged of Qualcomm and Samsung products it is basically last year’s design for a third of the price.

The studies by repair firm iFixit and chip analysis firm TechInsights here, published this week, are among the first detailed teardowns of the phones, which reviews suggested were a subtle upgrade from the tenth anniversary iPhone X.

Samsung in the past has supplied memory chips for Apple’s iPhones and was believed by analysts to be the sole supplier of the costly displays for last year’s iPhone X.

Qualcomm has been a supplier of components to Apple for years, but the two have been locked in a wide-ranging legal dispute in which Apple has accused Qualcomm of unfair patent licensing practices.

The iFixit teardown showed iPhone Xs and Xs Max used Intel’s modem and communication chips instead of Qualcomm’s hardware.

The latest iPhones also had DRAM and NAND memory chips from Micron Technology and Toshiba.

Previous teardowns of the iPhone 7 had shown DRAM chips made by Samsung in some models.

TechInsights’ dissection of a 256-gigabyte storage capacity iPhone Xs Max, on the other hand, revealed DRAM from Micron but NAND memory from SanDisk, which is owned by Western Digital and works with Toshiba for its supply of NAND chips.

This is to be expected as Toshiba’s chip unit Toshiba Memory was purchased by a private equity-led consortium earlier this year that Apple joined.

Jim Morrison, vice president of TechInsights, said in an interview that it appeared that one of Dialog Semiconductor’s chips had been replaced in the iPhone Xs Max by one of Apple’s own chips, but it was not yet known whether that also applied to the iPhone Xs.

IFixit and TechInsights technicians also found components from companies including Skyworks, Broadcom, Murata, NXP Semiconductors, Cypress Semiconductor, Texas Instruments and STMicroelectronics.

Ifixit said that Apple’s use of screws instead of so much glue made the gear easier to fix (if you have a non-standard Apple approved screwdriver) , but the glass on front and back doubles the likelihood of drop damage—and if the back glass breaks, you'll be removing every component and replacing the entire chassis.


Last modified on 24 September 2018
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