So much for the iPhone 14’s surprisingly repairable design extending across the lineup. iFixit has completed a teardown of the iPhone 14 Pro Max, and the easier-to-fix internals haven’t carried over. Break the back glass and you’ll have a harder time repairing it yourself — or an expensive ($549 in the US) Apple Store visit if your device is out of warranty. While Apple never said the Pro models would receive this upgrade, it’s worth considering if you plan to keep your phone running with a little surgery.
It’s not clear why Apple didn’t rethink internals across the entire iPhone 14 range. iFixit speculates that Apple wanted to limit potential delays, particularly given the supply chain risks involved with the Pro family’s new camera and display technologies. We’ve asked Apple for comment, but it won’t be surprising if more accessible innards come with future generations.
The teardown has a few additional surprises. On US versions of the iPhone 14 line, Apple hasn’t replaced the newly removed SIM tray with anything else. This is more to push eSIM adoption than to save space, then. iFixit also couldn’t pinpoint a dedicated satellite antenna for emergency communication, suggesting that Apple might be using the usual cellular or WiFi antennas to send SOS messages.
The overall repairability of the iPhone 14 Pro “isn’t terrible” outside of the requirement to activate parts, according to iFixit. Unless Apple harmonizes its design, though, do-it-yourself repair enthusiasts will have to make sacrifices if they want an iPhone they can fix with relatively little difficulty.