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Teardown Suggests Apple Watch Series 5 Components are Close to Identical to Series 4

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Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
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The internals of the Apple Watch Series 5 are almost identical to the internal components of the previous-generation Apple Watch Series 4, according to a new teardown conducted by repair site iFixit.

That should come as no surprise as the two devices are identical in design, with the major differentiating factor being the Always-On display in the newer model.


iFixit hoped to get a look at the changes implemented to allow for the Always-On display, but much of what's new relates to display technology and is "invisible to the human eye."

The site did spot a new ambient light sensor embedded under the OLED panel, and Apple says there are more advanced display drivers and an improved power management chip in the Series 5 as well.

There's a new built-in compass and the battery is slightly bigger than the battery in the Series 4 (1.4% larger in the 44mm model). The Series 5 chip includes 32GB of storage, up from 16GB, and the new compass, but it features the same GPU and CPU as the Series 4 so there are no real performance improvements.

Series 4 battery on left, Series 5 battery on right​

iFixit says there are minor changes to connectors for the Taptic Engine, display, and battery, which means components are not generally interchangeable, but otherwise, the two devices are "very similar" on the inside.

Article Link: Teardown Suggests Apple Watch Series 5 Components are Close to Identical to Series 4
 

nt5672

macrumors 68020
Jun 30, 2007
2,170
4,625
Innovation at its best. On the other hand there are so many "I have to have the latest Apple fashion accessory" people that you really can't blame Apple for catering to ignorant indoctrinated buyers. After all they spend millions to make that a reality.
 
Comment

freezah

macrumors member
Aug 28, 2012
49
110
Apple Watch Series 5 supports much more LTE and UMTS bands worldwide so Apple either changed the wireless chipset or the antenna. I wonder if US version will work fine in Europe.
 
Comment

dan9700

Suspended
May 28, 2015
3,347
4,822
First Apple product in years I haven’t brought on launch and gonna skip its much darker brightness compared to S4 my mate has it and the beta didn’t help it’s not good, also the fact the s5 chip has no speed improvements is a no sale from me, always on is a gimmick
[automerge]1569432461[/automerge]
The AOD is the huge new feature. Nothing else matters this year.
It makes Series 5 a no-brainer purchase for pretty much everyone.
Not really how hard is it to touch the screen or move it to look at it, the screen on max brightness is much dimmer than s4
 
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benshive

macrumors demi-god
Feb 26, 2017
593
5,313
United States
Innovation at its best. On the other hand there are so many "I have to have the latest Apple fashion accessory" people that you really can't blame Apple for catering to ignorant indoctrinated buyers. After all they spend millions to make that a reality.
Or maybe after the major improvements of last years release an incremental upgrade was expected for this year. Many S4 owners will stick with last years model (myself included) and the S5 is great for people upgrading from an S3 or earlier or no watch. Do you expect a revolutionary new device packed with fresh technology every year?
 
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fmcshan

Editor
Apr 8, 2019
223
749
Because of the incremental update this year, I'm going to wait until next year to upgrade from my Series 3. I've also heard battery life isn't great, yet I'm still getting great battery life on my two year old watch. Hopefully an Apple Watch with a better battery and some form of sleep tracking is released next year!
 
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Patriot24

macrumors 68030
Dec 29, 2010
2,811
793
California
This is a bad title/article. From the article itself:
  • Always-on display
  • New ambient light sensor
  • Better display drivers
  • New power management chip
  • Compass
  • Bigger battery
  • Double storage
  • Minor changes to connectors for the Taptic Engine, display, and battery
In other words, not "Close to Identical." I get it that it isn't an earth-shattering update, but people tripping over themselves to claim this is the Series 4 with a "5" slapped on it are being disingenuous.
 
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John Connor

macrumors member
Mar 26, 2010
45
107
My friend took his Watch 5 back today. Battery is very poor. Also he said it's not bright enough outdoors.
 
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Baymowe335

macrumors 604
Oct 6, 2017
6,627
12,404
Innovation at its best. On the other hand there are so many "I have to have the latest Apple fashion accessory" people that you really can't blame Apple for catering to ignorant indoctrinated buyers. After all they spend millions to make that a reality.
Innovation isn’t constrained to hardware alone and doesn’t mean the watch isn’t innovative because it can’t teleport you to a place increasingly far away each year.

If you’re honest with yourself, you know the Apple Watch is not only innovative, it’s the best smartwatch available by a wide margin.

Posts like this just make you look like a hater because you’re way too dismissive.
 
Comment

darkarw

macrumors regular
Oct 3, 2014
229
42
The battery on the left is the series 5 and the battery on the right is the series 4, not the way its listed in the article.
 
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rosegoldoli

macrumors 6502a
Feb 21, 2019
796
945
This is a bad title/article. From the article itself:
  • Always-on display
  • New ambient light sensor
  • Better display drivers
  • New power management chip
  • Compass
  • Bigger battery
  • Double storage
  • Minor changes to connectors for the Taptic Engine, display, and battery
In other words, not "Close to Identical." I get it that it isn't an earth-shattering update, but people tripping over themselves to claim this is the Series 4 with a "5" slapped on it are being disingenuous.

people are just tripped up on the processor being the same, but there must've of been changes to it to work with the compass and AOD functionality
 
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thefourthpope

Contributor
Sep 8, 2007
1,026
274
DelMarVa
The AOD is the huge new feature. Nothing else matters this year.
It makes Series 5 a no-brainer purchase for pretty much everyone.
Innovation at its best. On the other hand there are so many "I have to have the latest Apple fashion accessory" people that you really can't blame Apple for catering to ignorant indoctrinated buyers. After all they spend millions to make that a reality.
I love these two comments appearing right after each other. Really sums up the tensions of Macrumors as a community.
 
Comment

JGIGS

macrumors 65816
Jan 1, 2008
1,406
1,309
CANADA!
The AOD is the huge new feature. Nothing else matters this year.
It makes Series 5 a no-brainer purchase for pretty much everyone.

LOL ok if you're buying sure. Since it cost's about 640 tax in for me I'll hold on to my S3 at least another year. If I was going to us that money to upgrade anything it would be my X or a new macbook. (Yes I know they cost more but I could use newer versions of those more.)

I personally don't find AOD that ground breaking personally. It's nice but I'm doing just fine moving my wrist and the display turning on.

Apple watch is nice and currently the best smartwatch on the market but it's still mostly a glorified notifications/fitness/sleep tracking device for me. Not that there's anything wrong with that, but for me it's more an upgrade when it dies type of device.
 
Comment

LuciusWrong

macrumors regular
Jun 24, 2019
239
181
But the new one has way more hype. And that is what counts, right?

(We cant hate Apple for being profitable without first rejecting our Capitalistic ideology.....but i think it is fair to make fun of the ideology via criticising Apples latest and greatest. It fits us like a glove....and only we can be blamed!)
 
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