We recently released the iFixit XS / XS Max iPhones disassembly, which overall did not point to significant changes between the new devices and the previous model (the iPhone X). Not surprisingly, the firm also opened the Apple Watch Series 4 and unlike the new iPhones, the insides of the gadget showcased the biggest leap in design since the first model, launched in 2015.
To show how different they are, iFixit X-rayed the Apple Watch Series 4 and the previous model. The new Watch, left, features a new optical sensor in the middle, surrounded by several electrodes.
When opening the clock, on the back of the display are arranged three chips, of which two are sealed. Based on Watch's past guides, iFixit assumes that these components are touch and NFC controllers.
O flexible battery cable also changed position; It is now glued under the battery and above the main board.
Speaking of battery, the component that powers the Apple Watch Series 4 for 18 hours a day has approximately 292mAh a 4% increase in capacity over the previous model. Although the battery occupies 2mm more than in previous generations, Ma managed to do the feat of making the new Watch 0.7mm thinner.
To achieve this, however, Apple had to shrink other components such as the Taptic engine (which got thinner, but longer). For even smaller iFixit, the watch's vibrating motor still takes up a lot of space (which could be used for a larger battery).
The loudspeakers of the new Watch have also been improved and are now 50% higher. In addition, the microphone has been migrated to near Digital Crownso that the speaker can take advantage of the space on the other side. As in previous versions, a silicone gasket seals the speaker so that the gadget can expel water.
O new 64-bit S4 processor It is also no longer glued and now only fastened with screws. As always, the component itself is encased in a solid block, which means that the repairability here is almost zero. Fortunately, however, transistors and radio frequency components remain partially exposed.
Below the processor and the simplified antenna of the gadget, are the new sensors that make it possible to perform the electrocardiogram (EGC) complementing the optical sensors that already existed. The first electrode is at the base of the watch, which presses the wrist; the second is in Digital Crown, where the person must lean for the reading to be done.
With respect Digital Crown, a new optical encoder offers even more accurate scrolling through applications or the web. In addition, it has an elastic support that conducts the electrical signal from the finger to the second electrode, completing the ECG circuit.
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As we said, the internal design of the Apple Watch Series 4 brings the biggest leap since the release of its first version, in which the watch's components have been clumsily layered in addition to using too much glue. According to iFixit, mounting the new Watch appears to be "much more carefully planned."
Apple analyst John Gruber compared this to the leap in design brought on by the iPhone 4, and we might even go a step further and call it the iPhone 5: a device that knows its priorities and wants to look as elegant on the inside as on the outside.
The Apple Watch Series 4 received 6 points out of 10 on the reparability scale, the same grade as the new iPhones. According to the firm, the worst points of the clock are the flexible cables mounted directly on the S4 processor and the processor casing, which makes repairing this board virtually impossible.