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MacRumors
Oct 20, 2011, 11:03 AM
http://images.macrumors.com/im/macrumorsthreadlogo.gif (http://www.macrumors.com/2011/10/20/teardown-of-new-ipod-touch-reveals-few-changes-if-any/)


http://images.macrumors.com/article-new/2011/10/white_ipod_touch_teardown.jpg


With the addition of white models and a new entry-level price point (http://www.macrumors.com/2011/10/04/ipod-touch-now-comes-in-white-8gb-model-now-199/) earlier this month, Apple considered the iPod touch line to have been updated despite the lack of any substantial hardware improvements. The company continues to refer the device as the fourth-generation (http://support.apple.com/kb/ht1353) line, first introduced in 2010, but the teardown experts at iFixit decided to crack one open (http://www.ifixit.com/blog/blog/2011/10/20/a-peek-inside-the-ipod-touch-5th-generation/) anyway to see if anything had quietly been changed.So what does this year's Touch have in store?

After close examination, we confirmed that the front panel is, in fact, white. +1 for us. So far so good.

And... that's about it. To our dismay there is not much else different between the iPod Touch released last year and the one released last week.In a close examination of the logic board in the new white iPod touch, iFixit could really only distinguish new markings on the A4 chip, as well as possible upgrades to the Wi-Fi/Bluetooth and gyroscope components. But it is unclear from the new chip numbers exactly what has been changed, meaning that they may simply be minor revisions offering the same functionality as earlier versions.

Article Link: Teardown of 'New' iPod Touch Reveals Few Changes, If Any (http://www.macrumors.com/2011/10/20/teardown-of-new-ipod-touch-reveals-few-changes-if-any/)



buckers
Oct 20, 2011, 11:10 AM
No big surprise, here. A shame, though.

Hastings101
Oct 20, 2011, 11:16 AM
Lame

Chaos123x
Oct 20, 2011, 11:23 AM
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I wonder how apple can make the iPod touch so cheap without subsidizing yet the iPhone cost so much more unsubsidized. Same thing with thickness how can the iPod touch be so thin? Does adding a cell phone chip really increase the size that much?

Tyler.Schmaltz
Oct 20, 2011, 11:30 AM
More then just a cellphone chip in the iPhone. You also have all the extra antenna's and gps stuff and microphone as well and higher res cameras. Plus for the iPhone you have many patents and stuff you have to pay on etc.

adztaylor
Oct 20, 2011, 11:30 AM
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I wonder how apple can make the iPod touch so cheap without subsidizing yet the iPhone cost so much more unsubsidized. Same thing with thickness how can the iPod touch be so thin? Does adding a cell phone chip really increase the size that much?

The iPod Touch uses much cheaper components, as for the thickness not only does the iPhone have the 3G chip it has to have a much beefier battery to make it last. The iPhone wouldn't last very long using the battery from the iPod Touch.

wrinkster22
Oct 20, 2011, 11:32 AM
I don't think they needed to do a teardown to prove this.

macthetiger85
Oct 20, 2011, 11:37 AM
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I thought the camera was the difference with the thickness. The 8mp sensor won't fit in the iPod touch. As far as price - no clue. NAND? Maybe the R&D? The fact that they had to install and create crazy rooms to test signal strength and what not. The iPod touch doesn't need much of that because the R&D comes from the iPhone. Lastly an explanation is they do subsidize it to get a larger install base of iOS 5 and the app store (30% revenue) they do market it as a gaming device. Those games aren't cheap. And if none of this is right then they're just being greedy with the iPhone.

Tyler.Schmaltz
Oct 20, 2011, 11:38 AM
I found the whole keynote kinda funny. Apple sits there and tells us that the ipod touch is the #1 mobile gaming platform in the world or w.e. Then proceeds to show off the new iPhone 4s and the new games it can play. So basically apple is saying you cant play the latest and greatest games on the #1 mobile gaming platform because we dont want to change its internals and give it the a5.

nagromme
Oct 20, 2011, 11:40 AM
I wonder how apple can make the iPod touch so cheap without subsidizing yet the iPhone cost so much more unsubsidized. Same thing with thickness how can the iPod touch be so thin? Does adding a cell phone chip really increase the size that much?

Apple may well take smaller margins, but also:

* The iPod has a lower-quality screen. Same retina res, but worse viewable angle. (The iPhone hardly shifts colors at all when you tilt it quite far, as when it's lying flat, say.)

* The iPod has half the RAM of the iPhone 4 and 4S, as well as a smaller battery, I believe.

* The iPod has a much lower-quality rear camera (really dedicated to video, much like the iPad).

* The iPod lacks a cell radio/antennas, SIM slot, GPS, vibrator, noise-cancelling second mic, mic/remote built into earbuds, rear glass, camera flash lamp, mute switch, proximity sensor, and magnetometer/compass.

So, lots of small factors add up!

As for thickness, I believe one issue is that the lower-quality iPod camera is smaller. I believe the terrific camera defines the minimum thickness of the iPhone. (And compare the awkward camera “humps” on some phones—always a design challenge.)

milo
Oct 20, 2011, 12:00 PM
I wonder how apple can make the iPod touch so cheap without subsidizing yet the iPhone cost so much more unsubsidized. Same thing with thickness how can the iPod touch be so thin? Does adding a cell phone chip really increase the size that much?

Exactly what I was wondering. The touch is so much cheaper when the subsidy is included (or the unlocked price) for what seems like fairly minor differences in hardware.


Apple may well take smaller margins, but also...


All true. But isn't even the 3GS more expensive than the touch at $375? Many of the things you listed don't apply to that model. It really does seem like the iPhones have artificially inflated prices (or at least some of them), and that apple could make either a cheaper iPhone (unlocked price) or offer something better as the free unsubsidized option.

cvaldes
Oct 20, 2011, 12:04 PM
Apple reduces the iPod touch costs by omitting or downgrading certain items.

The fourth-generation iPod touch has 256MB RAM versus the iPhone 4 which had double the amount. The display is indeed Retina, although it is not IPS, nor does it have an oleophobic coating. The camera is smaller, lower quality and cheaper. There is no cellular system (baseband chip, power amplifiers, antenna and miscellaneous circuitry) nor a GPS chip.

Apple's margins on the iPod touch are less than the iPhone though.

morespce54
Oct 20, 2011, 12:18 PM
I guess, for me, that means no new iPod for now...



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I wonder how apple can make the iPod touch so cheap without subsidizing yet the iPhone cost so much more unsubsidized...

Well if you do believe iSuppli (http://www.macrumors.com/2011/10/20/iphone-4s-component-costs-once-again-begin-at-about-188/), the iPhone components cost is about $188...

milo
Oct 20, 2011, 12:27 PM
The fourth-generation iPod touch has 256MB RAM versus the iPhone 4 which had double the amount. The display is indeed Retina, although it is not IPS, nor does it have an oleophobic coating. The camera is smaller, lower quality and cheaper. There is no cellular system (baseband chip, power amplifiers, antenna and miscellaneous circuitry) nor a GPS chip.

Again, keeping all that in mind, how is $375 for an iPhone 3GS justified?

Brian Buttplug
Oct 20, 2011, 12:37 PM
Again, keeping all that in mind, how is $375 for an iPhone 3GS justified?

Supply and demand 101

johncrab
Oct 20, 2011, 12:54 PM
If it works, don't fix it. It's a great box which was improved through software. I just gave my parents two of these this week and they are thrilled with the improvements over their older models. Apple has a real winner here and there is no point in messing with it just for the sake of change.

FloatingBones
Oct 20, 2011, 01:09 PM
Next year, an iPod Touch with an A5 and Siri when connected with WiFi would be awesome!

I don't think they needed to do a teardown to prove this.

Agreed. But do you really think we need an iPhone 4S demo either to know whether or not it will blend (http://www.willitblend.com/)? ;)

PeterQVenkman
Oct 20, 2011, 02:31 PM
I was going to get a next gen touch, but when nothing changed, I'm now considering getting an iPhone 4s. I think that is exactly what apple wanted me to do.

WLS
Oct 20, 2011, 02:42 PM
With new numbers on the A4 chip it really doesn't prove that it is the same old 256meg ram version.
I would have thought it cheaper to just use the same A4 in all devices going forward.
I don't see a reason now to buy it though... expecting a new device next year that probably will not be called the Touch :(

colbertnation
Oct 20, 2011, 03:00 PM
Well, describing Oct 4th release festivities as "disappointing" would be the understatement of the year.

Read this disclaimer before you hit the downvote button:
I'm not saying that iPhone 4S or iPod touch are inferior or bad products (just got a 4S myself)... they're superb products, but they're no iPhone 5/next gen iPod touch.

Invincibilizer
Oct 20, 2011, 03:38 PM
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; CPU iPhone OS 5_0 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit/534.46 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.1 Mobile/9A334 Safari/7534.48.3)

I wonder how apple can make the iPod touch so cheap without subsidizing yet the iPhone cost so much more unsubsidized. Same thing with thickness how can the iPod touch be so thin? Does adding a cell phone chip really increase the size that much?

Apple may well take smaller margins, but also:

* The iPod has a lower-quality screen. Same retina res, but worse viewable angle. (The iPhone hardly shifts colors at all when you tilt it quite far, as when it's lying flat, say.)

* The iPod has half the RAM of the iPhone 4 and 4S, as well as a smaller battery, I believe.

* The iPod has a much lower-quality rear camera (really dedicated to video, much like the iPad).

* The iPod lacks a cell radio/antennas, SIM slot, GPS, vibrator, noise-cancelling second mic, mic/remote built into earbuds, rear glass, camera flash lamp, mute switch, proximity sensor, and magnetometer/compass.

So, lots of small factors add up!

As for thickness, I believe one issue is that the lower-quality iPod camera is smaller. I believe the terrific camera defines the minimum thickness of the iPhone. (And compare the awkward camera “humps” on some phones—always a design challenge.)

iPod touch bill of materials is 130$ to 150$.

With no updates here the BOM is now as low as 110$ and as another user has said, R&D is covered by the iPhone. Apple still is making a rather large profit from iPod touches.

kschles
Oct 20, 2011, 03:44 PM
Sigh, maybe when the Iphone 5 is released we can look forward to an updated Ipod Touch. My 3G is getting full. I'll have to go classic eventually or split up between music (classic) and apps (touch), something I really don't want to do.

atheos
Oct 20, 2011, 03:53 PM
Well, Apple did not even change a single part number when it comes to the "new" iPods... They just added the white ones. iPod nano part numbers also remained the same so no hardware changes there either.

sugarbear
Oct 20, 2011, 04:24 PM
If I'm honest, part of me loves the fact that the iPod Touch wasn't updated since I bought the 4G right after launch in 2010.

...makes me feel like it was an awesome, perfectly-timed buy. :)

gadget123
Oct 20, 2011, 06:16 PM
I think they should have added 3G support and A5 maybe a better camera. Perhaps that's for next year?

The big one is missing out A5.

charlituna
Oct 20, 2011, 10:58 PM
I wonder how apple can make the iPod touch so cheap without subsidizing yet the iPhone cost so much more unsubsidized.


licensing for the cellular tech

noni675
Oct 20, 2011, 11:28 PM
I was hoping for an upgraded iPod Touch. It seems like Apple wasted an opportunity to increase their share of the devices with gaming capabilities, even though an upgrade to the A5 might have only been half the performance of the Sony Playstation Vita (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PlayStation_Vita). I imagine IF the next iPhone includes a larger screen, then maybe that upgrade (along with an upgraded CPU/GPU) will come down to the next iPod Touch. I just have my doubts that Apple would upgrade the screen, camera, and CPU/GPU to the most recent (instead of using 'last years', i.e. A5) technology. Even with a modest price increase, though a more substantial price is more likely for such a component upgrade.

Of course, with seemingly little competition in this market space (http://gizmodo.com/5844076/samsung-galaxy-player-4-and-5-hands+on-of-course-its-the-right-time-for-an-android-ipod-touch/gallery/1), maybe Apple just wants people to upgrade to the iPhone 4S instead.

I hope an A15/PowerVR SGX 600s combo are a strong possibility in any iPod Touch next year, though I'm probably dreaming. At best, it probably would be a quad-core A9/SGX543MP4 like the Playstation Vita, but probably will end up being the A5. :(

I just wish I had an idea of the price difference between an A4 and an A5 that Apple could have used in the current iPod Touch -- (Only $15 for an A5, if the cost analysis of iSuppli is correct (http://www.macobserver.com/tmo/article/isuppli_publishes_iphone_4s_cost_of_parts/)) -- though it probably comes down to 'perceived value' of the performance of the A5 vs the A4, which is likely why it may not have been included, so Apple could keep the same price point. :mad:

I fail to see how not upgrading the iPod Touch benefits Apple's bottom line.

pimentoLoaf
Oct 21, 2011, 05:40 AM
Despite no real changes from 2010, it's still more capable than my ol' 2008 1g model, which barely holds a charge, and easier to use than my antique iPod Classic from I-don't-know-when, whose 80gb drive is almost completely toast.

I got one in white and it's quite nice. (Nicer if it was upgraded, of course ...) Hopefully it will last 3 years like my previous one.

andylyon
Oct 21, 2011, 05:43 AM
If I'm honest, part of me loves the fact that the iPod Touch wasn't updated since I bought the 4G right after launch in 2010.

...makes me feel like it was an awesome, perfectly-timed buy. :)

Why did people vote this guy down? I'd feel exactly the same!

thepowerofnone
Oct 21, 2011, 06:33 AM
why are people even asking these questions about the difference in price between the iPod Touch and the iPhone?? The reason there is such a price gap is simply because Apple CAN... The iPhone is targeted at wealthy adults who want the best phone regardless of price; fundamentally the iPod Touch is targeted at kids and people who like watching their portable movies on a big screen. iPhone competes with other $500+ phones; iPod Touch competes with the 3DS and PSP, as well as other more conventional portable music players to some extent.

If you can shift 4 million phones in your opening weekend and your demand exceeds your supply pretty much all year round why wouldn't you make a killing with a huge profit margin???

Cp96alumni
Oct 21, 2011, 07:57 AM
More then just a cellphone chip in the iPhone. You also have all the extra antenna's and gps stuff and microphone as well and higher res cameras. Plus for the iPhone you have many patents and stuff you have to pay on etc.

My iPod 4th gen has a microphone. I can't see the camera, antenna or gps causing that big of a difference either. Phone components possibly. I agree with another poster. A larger battery is required to run the extra components. My iPhone 4 runs a lot longer than my iPod running apps, music, etc.

MacDarcy
Oct 21, 2011, 11:14 AM
Yeah...i won't lie...i was slightly bummed that this update was purely cosmetic. I had been waiting for it in order to update my camera-less 2nd gen ipod touch. Was hoping for a better camera than last years 4th gen model....but alas, that was not to be.

Still....i gladly purchased a new white 64 gig 5th gen ipod touch with iOS 5. I use it for facetime, imessage and as a voip device to replace my virgin pay as you go phone since i travel alot and dont like contracts. So far it works great.

I would imagine next september the ipod touch will get the better camera, faster chip and perhaps redesign. Until then...i am content. :-)

nas2344
Oct 21, 2011, 02:51 PM
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The iPhone is much higher product then those touches from what I have used

ECUpirate44
Oct 21, 2011, 02:54 PM
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; CPU iPhone OS 5_0 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit/534.46 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.1 Mobile/9A334 Safari/7534.48.3)

I wonder how apple can make the iPod touch so cheap without subsidizing yet the iPhone cost so much more unsubsidized. Same thing with thickness how can the iPod touch be so thin? Does adding a cell phone chip really increase the size that much?

It's the bigger battery and antenna that require it to be thicker than the iPod Touch.

Wolfpup
Oct 25, 2011, 10:18 AM
It's still the iPod touch 4...that's why there's no changes.

I hope/expect that since the iPhone 5 was delayed 4 or so months, the iPod touch 5 will be as well, that maybe we'll see the iPad 3 and iPod 5 at the same time early next year.

ncaissie
Jan 5, 2012, 07:50 AM
I think Apple is not upgrading them because the price would be the same anyway and there is no competition for them anyway. It sucks. Companies get lazy when there is no one to compete with. Look at MS and Windows. Vista and windows 7 are the same with the User annoying messages turned off. :(

NZed
Jan 5, 2012, 08:09 AM
Despite no real changes from 2010, it's still more capable than my ol' 2008 1g model, which barely holds a charge, and easier to use than my antique iPod Classic from I-don't-know-when, whose 80gb drive is almost completely toast.

I got one in white and it's quite nice. (Nicer if it was upgraded, of course ...) Hopefully it will last 3 years like my previous one.

My first gen ipod touch still holds over a days charge and i use it everywhere

Wolfpup
Jan 5, 2012, 09:08 AM
I think Apple is not upgrading them because the price would be the same anyway and there is no competition for them anyway. It sucks. Companies get lazy when there is no one to compete with. Look at MS and Windows. Vista and windows 7 are the same with the User annoying messages turned off. :(

I don't like change for change's sake. Vista and 7 are both the same basic OS, but IMO that's good, as there's no reason to change it, and anyway 7 does have tons of nice interface changes.

The iPod on the other hand DESPERATELY needs faster hardware, and iOS is soooo primitive next to real Windows or OS X. For now, at least bumping it to iPad 2 specs would be a HUGE improvement (and PLEASE give us a 4x larger battery...) though long run I really want a full OS in a Palm esque device...always wanted that from the beginning :D

If nothing else, even just bumping the RAM to 512MB on the iPod would probably make it feel a lot faster? It was slow on 4.x, and is just dirt slow now...takes seconds just to unlock when I'm playing a podcast.

milo
Jan 5, 2012, 09:48 AM
I think Apple is not upgrading them because the price would be the same anyway and there is no competition for them anyway.

I'd argue now there's MAJOR competition for the iPad touch, it's the Kindle Fire. Sounds like it sold very well over the holidays, and if Apple had updated the touch and really pushed it to that audience I think they could have made many of those sales instead of Amazon getting them.

ncaissie
Jan 5, 2012, 10:21 AM
I think the Fire is competition for the Ipad and not the Ipod touch. The Ipod touch is for music and movies with gaming built in. There is nothing like it in the market except the Zune which failed.

milo
Jan 5, 2012, 10:28 AM
The fire is competition for both, it also does music, video, apps/games, and web content. The main difference between that and the touch is just screen size. I'd also say that the cheaper android phones are competition (even though touch doesn't include a phone), but the fire is a bigger and more sudden entry to the market.

Wolfpup
Jan 5, 2012, 12:11 PM
I guess it sort of is, but still you can slip an iPod in your pocket.

Samsung technically makes an Android iPod touch like device.

They SEEM Pretty nice, and I was tempted to buy one, but I don't know what hardware they're running...might still be an A8, and more importantly, like all Android stuff I don't actually trust that they'll be kept updated.

Plus, I don't know how great it is for podcasts anyway, and the iPod does that pretty darned well.

EDIT: Actually, Microsoft SHOULD have a "Windows Phone 7 without the phone" Zune replacement, but they don't for some reason...and in that case I'm almost certain the podcast handling doesn't work for me. The Zune desktop just doesn't have enough options, and it was kind of like just all automated for podcasts, instead of letting me see a playcount and manually deleting stuff, as I do in iTunes.