iFixit tears down the iPhone 12 mini, shows how Apple crammed it all in
iFixit has posted its teardown of the iPhone 12 mini, and it found inside what seems clear from the outside: a smaller version of the iPhone 12, with no missing features or components. However, some of those components—most notably the battery—are a bit smaller than they are in this phone’s 6.1-inch big brother.
iFixit found that the battery measures in at 8.57Wh. For comparison, the iPhone SE—which actually has a larger body—has a smaller 6.96Wh battery, whereas the much larger iPhone 12 and iPhone 12 Pro both have 10.78Wh batteries. This maps pretty closely to what battery tests have found: the iPhone 12 mini offers better battery life than an iPhone SE or iPhone 8, but it can’t beat its larger siblings.
Other shrunk-down components found by iFixit include a smaller Taptic Engine and loudspeaker. Also, some display-related components have been moved around, and there are only two display cables (compared to the iPhone 12’s three).
One thing isn’t scaled back much, though: the camera. iFixit suggests the decision to keep camera parity between the mini and the 12 surely came at the cost of some battery life. An even smaller camera system could have made room for a little bit more battery volume.
As always, the focus of iFixit’s teardown is on the repairability of the device. iFixit gave the iPhone 12 mini a six out of 10 score for repairability, noting that the two most common subjects of repair—the screen and battery—are easily accessible. However, the glass back is difficult to service, suggesting a bad drop could require “replacing the entire body of the iPhone.”
For a closer look at what’s on the logic board, an examination of some of the differences between the US and EU versions of this phone, and more insights about repairability, check out iFixit’s full teardown.
Listing image by Samuel Axon