[iPhone 5 Teardown (2)] Battery Made by China-based Lishen

Sep 27, 2012
Nikkei Electronics Teardown Squad
The front panel was separated from the iPhone 5. (photo: Hiroshi Nakamura)
The front panel was separated from the iPhone 5. (photo: Hiroshi Nakamura)
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The batteries of the iPhone 4S (top) and the iPhone 5 (bottom)
The batteries of the iPhone 4S (top) and the iPhone 5 (bottom)
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The thicknesses of the iPhone 4S' (top) and the iPhone 5's (bottom) batteries were compared.
The thicknesses of the iPhone 4S' (top) and the iPhone 5's (bottom) batteries were compared.
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The size of the battery's connector was also reduced. The iPhone 5's connector (left) and the iPhone 4S' connector (right). (photo: Hiroshi Nakamura)
The size of the battery's connector was also reduced. The iPhone 5's connector (left) and the iPhone 4S' connector (right). (photo: Hiroshi Nakamura)
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An enlarged picture of the iPhone 5's battery. It is printed with Chinese characters that mean Tianjin Lishen Battery Co Ltd.
An enlarged picture of the iPhone 5's battery. It is printed with Chinese characters that mean Tianjin Lishen Battery Co Ltd.
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Continued from [iPhone 5 Teardown (1)] Sucking Disc Used to Remove Panel

On the connectors that connect the LCD panel, touch panel and the front camera to the main board, a thin metal cover was fixed with screws. Many of the iPhone 5's connectors were covered with a metal cover. It seemed that Apple Inc cared much about reduction of electromagnetic noise.

Under the front panel, there was a long battery on which the L-shaped main board was mounted. This structure is often used for the iPhone series of smartphones.

This time, however, the components that were placed in the right parts of the previous models are located in the left side and vice versa. It is because the back cover can be removed in the case of the iPhone 4/4S while the front panel can be removed in the case of the iPhone 5.

There was also a metal cover fixed with screws on the connector that connects the rechargeable battery to the main board. We took out the main board after removing the cover and the screws used to fix the main board. The battery was attached to the bottom of the iPhone 5's bathtub-like case with a double-sided adhesive tape.

We carefully removed the tape with a spatula and took out the battery. The width of the iPhone 5's battery was the same as that of the iPhone 4S' battery. But the iPhone 5's battery was longer and thinner.

When we measured the thicknesses of the batteries (including the laminates) with a caliper, the thickness of the iPhone 4S' battery was 3.8mm, and that of the iPhone 5's battery was 3.3mm. Probably, Apple employed the thinner battery for reducing the thickness of the main body. And the connector used to connect the battery to the main board was smaller than in the case of the iPhone 4S.

The surface of the iPhone 5's battery was printed with "3.8V, 5.45Whr, 1440mAh," meaning that its capacity is slightly larger than the capacity of the iPhone 4S' battery ("3.7V, 5.3Whr, 1430mAh"). According to a reporter who is well-versed in batteries, the voltage of the battery was increased probably because the positive electrode material was changed. Also, the charging voltage of the battery was increased from 4.2V (iPhone 4S) to 4.3V (iPhone 5).

The name of the company that manufactures the iPhone 5's battery was also printed on its surface in Chinese characters. It turned out to be Tianjin Lishen Battery Co Ltd, which is one of the four largest China-based battery makers (ATL, BAK, BYD and Lishen).

The Chinese characters printed on the iPhone 4S' battery indicated that it was manufactured by ATL. It reminded us that batteries made in China are now commonly used even in high-end smartphones.

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