Monday, June 24, 2013

iPhone 5S internals, A7 processor showed off in leaked images

And the iPhone 5S leaks just keep on comin'. The latest one, on Monday, gives eager iPhone fans a look at the internals of the new device.

Among the images posted by MacRumors was one of a dual-LED flash featuring what appears to be two different colored LEDs. That detail suggests that the iPhone 5S will flash different colored hues depending on the surrounding lighting.

In addition, an earlier image showed a battery with a higher capacity than that in the iPhone 5. The 5S battery -- notably, the battery would be easy to swap out if Apple decided to put a different capacity, but same-sized version in the final product -- has a capacity of 5.92 Whr, compared to the 5.45 Whr of the iPhone 5.

More important to those wanting speed, speed, speed, the processor of the 5S is seated on the board in the latest leak, showing what appears to be an A7 chip with the designation APL0698. The A5 processor debuted with the model number APL0498, while the A6 in the iPhone 5 debuted with the model number APL0598.

Apple has a pattern to its model numbers that are demonstrated in the A5, which has seen several different variations. A later die shrink carried an APL2498 designation, replacing the 0 with a 2, don't ya know. Yet another variant of the A5 appeared earlier this year in a tweaked Apple TV, with the designation of APL7498.

Additionally, markings on the A7 chip indicate that it carries Elpida DRAM, apparently 1GB just as seen on the A6.

Also seen on the processor is a K1A0062 identifier. According to Dick James and Jim Morrison of chip teardown firm Chipworks, in previous chips this designator has typically started with an "N" and referred to a Samsung part number on the die.

Given that, there is speculation that this new "K" identifier could indicate that the chip is being made by TSMC instead of Samsung. It's well known that Apple wants to diverge some of its parts away from Samsung, and TSMC has been seen as the manufacturer of future Apple processors, currently built by Apple's huge Android rival.

However, while some reports said that TSMC would begin by manufacturing the A7, the latest rumors point to a switchover being made with the A8 chip rather than the A7.

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