IPhone 5S Reverse-Engineered; Samsung Developed A7 Processor; Sony Camera Sensor Spotted

iPhone 5S

Few hours after the launch of the most appealed Apple iPhone, the iPhone 5S; Geeks and Technology Enthusiasts from all around the world, had gone crazy exploring the core, as well as the exterior of the most sold mobile phone ever.

Just if you don’t know, Apple sold 9 million iPhones during its first weekend, topping the 5 million record that was set by Apple itself last year.

Chipworks – A Company dedicated to exploring the inside of the world’s largest technology organization, and taking their products apart – had partnered with iFixit, and has wasted no time in reverse-engineering the 5S.

Just like every other Apple’s product, the iPhone 5S is a wonder of engineering, assembling the most advanced hardware technology of various vendors, including the new A7 system on a chip, M7 coprocessor and the most sought-after Touch ID fingerprint authentication hardware into one of the lightest and thinnest smartphones in the market.

Among the highlights of iFixit’s teardown along with Chipworks of the iPhone 5S is a new Sony sensor for the 5S camera, the technology behind the new fingerprint scanner, the engineering ability to squeeze in a larger battery — and curiously there’s no M7 coprocessor to be found in fact it’s really just a tiny, standard Cortex-M3 core.

While the reverse-engineering is ongoing, Chipworks has already discovered that the A7 chip is indeed manufactured by Samsung, and not by Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC). By tearing down the 5S, Chipworks was able to determine that the chip was made using Samsung’s 28nm high-k metal gate technology. It had been rumoured that the SoC would be produced by TSMC instead of Samsung, but it would seem that isn’t the case.

As far as the Camera Sensor is concerned, Apple has progressed with a “new variant” of the Sony sensor, according to iFixit teardwon.

“The markings are consistent with the markings on the camera modules housing the Sony IMX145 we saw in the iPhone 4s and on the iPhone 5. The marks on the side of the module are different, but our industry insiders tell us this is Sony’s again. As Apple has stated the pixel pitch on this camera is 1.5 µ, this sensor should not be the IMX145, but a newer variant.”

Not only this, there are so many wonderment coming along as the tearing down is still in progress.

As usual, iFixit is diving down into the most nuanced of details, so if you’d like to get a complete look at how Apple’s latest flagship is put together, be sure to check out the teardown in its entirety.

One thing that really incites me about 5S is that Apple does such an incredible job in maximizing their battery size in their tiny phone, they meticulously design the internal components to be as compact as possible.

In case you were wondering, the iPhone 5C was also torn down this morning — and, unsurprisingly, there weren’t really any surprises. It’s just an iPhone 5 wrapped in (very hard) plastic.


  • M Zubair Aslam

    what about m7 ???

  • NetFreak

    For those who thinking that its made by Samsung… A7 is designed by Apple and manufactured by Samsung. All credit for A7’s low power consumption and performance goes to Apple not Samsung which only manufactured it under supervision of Apple.

    • NetFreak

      Search “Apple A7 wiki” on google to read more about it on Wikipedia.

      • Observer

        The sheer fact that you quoted “Wikipedia” as your source of information on the A7 is shocking.
        You proved to be yet another die hard Apple fan, who by the way are the most oblivious people on Earth :)

        • NetFreak

          And you have expressed your concern just like an Android Fan.

          • Hammad

            Yes, because Android fans are intelligent people who like a certain tech for its merits- unlike Apple fans who are just electronic fans.

            • Hammad

              NetFreak, let me tell you that in many institutions (schools, colleges, universities, research centers etc), Wikipedia is prohibited. One cant cite them as reference. The reason for this decisions requires an intelligent mind which silly Apple fanboys lack. So i shall spare you the details.

              • NetFreak

                Your arguments are so funny.. Saying apple fan silly and feeling yourself intelligent is not going make you intelligent by the way. Intelligent people are never those people who claim themselves intelligent. You are so funny or should i say mad?. Reference was just a reference it is obvious that A7 is designed by Apple. It is apple which can develop these chips from another manufacturer like TSMC, but it is Samsung who can not make even a single A7 chip without agreement approval of Apple.. got it? Apple preferred Samsung just because of its fast delivery of the chips compared to TSMC.

    • MySchizoBuddy

      According to anandtech review of the A7. They clearly state that A7 is Apple designed custom CPU that implements the ARM ISA. It isn’t the CPU designed by ARM. It is manufactured by Samsung.

      Saying Samsung developed A7 is like saying TSMC developed Geforce GPUS by Nvidia. Nvidia, AMD , Apple they design/develop their own CPU/GPUs and have someone else manufacture it. IN case of Apple it is Samsung(later TSMC for A8). In case of Nvidia it is TSMC and in case of AMD it is Global Foundaries.

  • Naeem sarwar

    9M were sold in total and only 5+ were sold directly to customer the rest are still lying in channel warehouse…..

    • Basher

      ?…..

    • MySchizoBuddy

      Apple cites “sold to customers numbers”. what you are talking about is “shipped numbers” . Apple has never cited shipped numbers. please educate yourself.