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Inside the iPhone 7 Plus

Posted on October 19th, 2016 by in New Materials & Applications


By Sam Lionheart [Creative Commons BY-NC-SA], via ifxit

Revolutionary, evolutionary, or just … “meh”? The only way to know for sure is to look under the covers of the iPhone 7 Plus.

I’ve always been fascinated at how things work – particularly technologically dense devices like smartphones. From the materials that are used, the way the components are apparently manufactured, to the complex decisions of space planning, clearance envelopes, and squeezing it all into limited space. It’s not until you look inside a device that you can truly appreciate all the engineering that goes into realizing a design.

Fortunately, I didn’t have to risk a personal device to satisfy my curiosity at how the engineers at Apple managed to pack so much technology into the new iPhone 7 Plus. The team over at iFixit have put together a comprehensive, step-by-step teardown showing all the gory detail from opening the case to pulling out the ring/silent switch. Complete with detailed images for each of the 26 steps, you’ll be able to identify all the major components and develop an appreciation for why tweezers are an essential tool in the process. And if reading is not your thing, the following video should scratch your tinkering itch:

With your newly found appreciation for what’s inside, you might be wondering how much all this tech-goodness is costing Apple? According to an article published on Quartz, parts for the iPhone 7 come in at approximately $220 plus an additional $5 for assembly. Retailing for around $650 means Apple is charging 3X material costs – a “rule of thumb” my Grandfather shared with me years ago. The iPhone 7 is not the most expensive phone ever produced by Apple – that record is held by the iPhone 6S Plus. If Apple follows historical trends, subsequent versions of this model will improve component costs.

BTW: Despite what you may have seen on YouTube, you CANNOT just drill a hole in your iPhone 7 to get your favorite earbuds to work.

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All opinions shared in this post are the author’s own.

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