iFixit iPhone 15 Teardown Reveals Software Obstacles
For years, smartphone repairability was hindered by designs that made battery swaps or screen replacements a daunting task. Last year’s iPhone 14 changed the game, allowing for front and back openings, significantly improving repairability scores.
The iPhone 15 and 15 Plus continue this trend, featuring a central chassis for internal components, allowing repairs from both sides, notes iFixit.
While the internals remain behind the screen rather than the back glass, the back glass is now removable, enhancing accessibility and repair options. Apple’s keynote even highlighted the new structural frame.
Apple continues to reduce display bezel thickness, improving aesthetics. While some noted a change in the display’s white gasket, it’s primarily a color shift from black, with a slightly altered design “that may pose challenges during removal.”
The introduction of the USB-C port is also a game-changer, providing a massive 15x power boost over Lightning ports for external devices, without serialization or throughput limitations.
The iPhone 15 Pro Max boasts a 2.3% battery capacity increase over its predecessor, but the A17 Pro’s power demands result in heat and potential battery life issues. According to iFixit, however, the battery is serviceable with proper training using available resources.
Despite all these improvements, the teardown experts say it’s time for Apple to rethink parts pairing, as it hinders repairability. Parts should be swappable without complex software calibrations.
Unfortunately, swapping the front camera between two of our 15 Pro Max units results in complete failure. The cameras simply do not work. When we first encountered this problem last year, where the part was paired to its original device, we assumed that it was a bug that would be quickly fixed. Our trust was clearly misplaced.
Repairability is crucial for local repair shops, refurbishers, and recyclers, and Apple’s hardware design could support this ecosystem without unnecessary restrictions.
While the iPhone dominates the market, Apple lags in repairability due to self-imposed limitations. You can read the iPhone 15 teardown in depth at the source page.