AMITIAE - Saturday 21 September 2013

Cassandra: iPhone 5s Analysis and Processor Surprises

apple and chopsticks


By Graham K. Rogers

Like many Apple followers, I look forward to the teardowns of new Apple products by iFixit and the deeper analysis of the product by AnandTech. It may seem odd, but these experts usually produce information that flat-out contradicts the comments of the pundits, who usually pronounce failure before they have their hands on the device.

Another excellent site for deep analysis is Chipworks who have been looking at the iPhone 5s and what the silicon contains. There are some surprises with regard to this smartphone:

  • The A7 processor is made by Samsung. Many commentators had speculated that production of the new 64-bit processor had been shifted to Taiwan, especially with Samsung expressing surprise at the new capabilities. Maybe the firewall between the two divisions really does work.

  • The motion co-processor that Apple calls the M7 - perhaps just to sound good alongside the A7 - was hard to identify as it was not marked as such. Instead, Chipworks report that this is the NXP LPC18A1 from the LPC180 series of Cortex-M3 based microcontrollers.

  • Related to the M7 are accelerometer, gyroscope and compass:
    • The 3-Axis Accelerometer was found to be a Bosch Sensortech BMA220; this shows a new approach for Apple, using such Bosch products in the devices
    • The gyroscope is from STMicroelectronics and is a 3-axis gyroscope.
    • An AK8963 3-axis electronic compass IC rounds out the motion processors

  • The camera uses the Sony Exmor-RS sensors that have been seen in other devices

The article from Chipworks has a brief rundown of some of the other products - from companies like Broadcom, Qualcomm, Hynix, Texas Instruments and Skyworks.

Graham K. Rogers teaches at the Faculty of Engineering, Mahidol University in Thailand where he is also Assistant Dean. He wrote in the Bangkok Post, Database supplement on IT subjects. For the last seven years of Database he wrote a column on Apple and Macs.



Made on Mac

For further information, e-mail to

information Tag information Tag

Back to eXtensions
Back to Home Page