iFixit Smart Keyboard Teardown Reveals ‘Mysterious’ Conductive Fabric


After the iPad Pro and Apple Pencil teardown, it was time for iFixit to take apart another accessory: the Smart Keyboard. While the teardown doesn’t deliver too many surprises, it does give a close look at Apple’s material choices and the components that make the product “smart”.

As noted by iFixit, Apple has encapsulated the Smart Keyboard in some high-tech fabric (their teardown engineer assumes it is nylon), which feels like a windbreaker. While this protects the accessory from water and stains, iFixit notes that you can’t take it apart without damaging the product.

Inside the Smart Keyboard – surprise! – there are no LEDs, batteries or fancy fans, just the circuit board.


As iFixit discovered, the “brains” of the device is a microcontroller from STMicroelectronics. But there is more: The teardown team discovered three interesting fabric strips made of Apple’s “mysterious conductive fabric”. They connect the keyboard to the Smart Connector and allow for a “two-way flow of power and data.” iFixit notes that these fabric strips should be more durable and fail-resistant than wires or traditional flex cable.

Finally, iFixit gave the Smart Keyboard a repairability score of 0 out of 10, saying that the accessory is impossible to open without irreversibly damaging it.

Technology enthusiast, rocker, biker and writer of iPhoneinCanada.ca. Follow me on Twitter or contact me via email: istvan@iphoneincanada.ca