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iPhone 15 teardown reveals updated Qualcomm 5G modem


Instead of keeping the iPhone 14 Pro's 5G Qualcomm modem, Apple has included an updated one in the iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus, with Qualcomm's X70 5G modem in use for this year's releases.

Tweets by iFixit lead teardown technician Shahram Mokhtari on Sunday reveal Apple is using Qualcomm's X70 in the new models, rather than reusing the X65 used in the iPhone 14 generation.

Introduced in 2022, the X70 is a fifth-generation modem-to-antenna 5G system that uses AI elements to improve its connectivity, including mmWave beam management and adaptive antenna tuning.

"Apple didn't just throw last years Pro logic boards into this years baseline models. They upgraded them too," wrote Mokhtari, in a comment playing on how the specifications of the iPhone 15 are seemingly borrowed from the iPhone 14 Pro.

The change in modem should be beneficial to all users, the technician adds, based on benchmarks of the iPhone 15 Pro. "The X70 should provide notable improvement in power consumption and signal acquisition over long distances."

"It also shows that Apple's baseline models aren't just the younger siblings forever receiving last years hand-me-downs," he continues. "There seems to be a genuine drive to keep the components on the logic boards up to date and current, despite the additional resources required to do so."

A full teardown of the iPhone 15 showed that the internals weren't too dissimilar to the iPhone 14. It also gave the device a repairability score of 4 out of 10 due to Apple's habit of pairing parts with software components, which makes repairs harder to do.