Some suggested pre-launch that the c in Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s iPhone 5C stands for cheap. But just how cheap is the device? IFixit did their teardown of the handset just as they did with the iPhone 5S and found some very interesting things.
Apple used bigger controls, tiny screws
The site tore down one of the blue iPhone 5C handsets and found that many of the outputs and controls were bigger than those of the iPhone 5 and 5S. In particular, the volume buttons are bigger, and the microphone grille and speaker grill have been replaced with grilles with fewer holes in them. The screws were said to be “super tiny.”
Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) also used adhesive strips to hold in the battery for the iPhone 5C, just as it did with the iPhone 5S. However, even though the company switched to adhesive strips, the experts at iFixit believe changing the battery will follow about the same process as it did with the iPhone 5.
iPhone 5C similar to the iPhone 5
As expected the inner workings of the iPhone 5C are pretty similar to those of the iPhone 5. However, it does feature a better battery. It has a 3.8 V – 6.74 Wh – 1510 mAh battery, compared to the iPhone 5’s 3.8 V – 5.35 Wh – 1440 mAh battery.
The iPhone 5C also has the Apple A6 processer which is found in the iPhone 5, plus a Qualcomm WTR1605L LTE/HSPA+/CDMA2K/TDSCDMA/EDGE/GPS transceiver and a Qualcomm MDM9615M LTE modem. Various other components are made by Toshiba, Qualcomm, Broadcom and others. The site notes that the iPhone 5S is a bit lighter than the iPhone 5C even though it features a fingerprint sensor.
Apple’s use of glue is controversial
The folks at iFixit also found that in addition to the battery being glued in, there were other components that were glued as well. The connectors for the antenna are glued in as well. iFixit and other similar tech sites have complained in the past about using glue inside smartphones, but Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) said it uses glue to make sure that its products are extremely thin. It also said to make sure that only professionals certified Apple do repairs on Apple products.
Overall, iFixit gives the iPhone 5C good marks in terms of build quality, particularly because they couldn’t bend its polycarbonate casing, which has steel backing. The site gave it a repairability score of 6 out of 10, mainly because of the glue used to secure components, as well as the screws which can’t be pulled out with an ordinary screwdriver.