iFixit iPhone 5s Teardown Reveals Touch ID, but no M7 Chip

While the rest of the world is fighting to get their hands on the gold iPhone 5s, iFixit was busy stripping one down to its frame. Inside, they found Apple's Touch Id fingerprint scanner, but the M7 motion and fitness chip wasn't anywhere to be seen.

iPhone 5s: Lots of parts, but no M7 chipiPhone 5s: Lots of parts, but no M7 chip

The Touch ID sensor scans your fingerprint and uses that to unlock your iPhone 5s instead of using a passcode, and it can also be used to authorize iTunes payments. What it can't do is come out easily.

A cable runs to the Lightning port assembly from the Home button's Touch ID sensor which means it takes a gentle touch to open the iPhone 5's case without causing any damage.

On the Touch ID sensor, the iFixit team said, "We worry about how well the sapphire crystal covering the sensor can protect it from degrading over time like most CMOS fingerprint sensors."

The M7 chip that Apple is so proud of turned out to not be a chip at all, and instead most likely is a series of components that work together. Apple touted the M7 as a way to track motion and fitness activities.

"As we search for a much-anticipated M7 coprocessor, we begin to wonder if it actually is a separate IC, or if it is additional functionality built into the A7," they said.

The battery is held in place with some serious adhesive which makes it much harder to remove and replace, but the difficult to work with interconnected antenna cables that were such a pain during repairs are now gone. Apple gives a little and takes a little.

iFixit gave the iPhone 5s a 6 out of ten for ease of repair, with 10 being the easiest. It lost points for the easy to break Touch ID cable, the more difficult to replace battery, more expensive replacement costs for the front glass, and the continued use of pentalobe screws.