iPod touch 5G teardown finds 512MB of RAM, 1030mAh battery | iLounge News


iPod touch 5G teardown finds 512MB of RAM, 1030mAh battery

iFixit has torn down the fifth-generation iPod touch, and confirmed that the device contains 512 MB of RAM — just as reported by Geekbench testing, and the same as the iPhone 4/4S, but more than the 256MB of RAM found in the previous generation iPod touch. Apple’s A5 processor and 32 GB of NAND flash from Toshiba were also found in the new iPod touch. The battery notably has jumped to 1030 mAh, more than the fourth-generation iPod touch’s 930 mAh cell. The device’s display is claimed to be “a much simpler, cheaper design” than the iPhone 5 display.


Also in the teardown, iFixit found a weaker, rubber-membrane design on the iPod touch home button, when compared to the iPhone 5. The iPod touch was given a repairability score of 3 out of 10, meaning the device will be hard to repair. By comparison, a score of 7 was awarded to the iPhone 5.

Related Stories



The 512MB of RAM is not surprising but still unfortunate. The difference in cost between 512MB vs 1GB DDR2 RAM is about $3 at retail for a single unit. That translates to around $0.50 at cost in bulk for Apple. For $0.50 (or less) extra in profits, Apple is going shorten the effective life of the device by at least a full year regardless of how long the hardware holds phyically*.

*Of course, the reliability estimates aren’t promising either and the display stuff is just insulting after Cook clearly stated the touch had the same display as the iPhone 5.

Apple seemingly thinks squeezing extra profits for themselves by deliberately shorting touch customers even though they’ve paid more than enough to deserve better components than delivered is going to make us more likely to buy an iPhone or iPad instead, and they’re wrong. In my case, the next time I upgrade I will almost certainly buy an Android device for portable “smart” usage and a “lasts for years” nano class player from Apple for music and podcasts.

Posted by Code Monkey on October 11, 2012 at 10:48 AM (CDT)


Wouldn’t the larger battery be needed for the A5 processor? Looks like the battery life will still be pathetic. I hope someone like Mophie comes out with a battery case.

Posted by Mike Pawka on October 11, 2012 at 12:45 PM (CDT)


@2: I’m not expecting great battery life either. Apple touts this thing as the world’s most popular portable game player and then seemingly chooses a battery based pure audio use, brilliant. I’ll wait for the tests since it’s possible the more advanced GPU/CPU combo will lessen the tax from app use, but I expect you won’t want to ever be more than an hour or two away from some place you can plug this in again if you are planning to do more than play audio and/or watch a little standard video.

Posted by Code Monkey on October 11, 2012 at 1:49 PM (CDT)


Did I read a different article than code monkey?

I’m with him that a full GB of RAM seems like it would be nice, but I know there are cost an battery trade off’s that come with that so I’m not sure I see it as a huge problem.

On the “reliability” issue I’m guessing that is pointed at the home button which is cheaper in design than the iPhone 5 but similar to what previous iPhones/iPod touches had and I don’t know that those devices had a “reliability problem”.

Further on the display, it sounds like they used an easier less expensive way to put it together, but not that the components are lesser quality.  Which makes sense considering that Apple sells these for 1/2 what they sell the iPhone 5 for.

As for his assertion that this iPod will push people to Android alternatives? What Android alternatives. The galaxy player looks to be the best alternative. Priced at $240, this thing still runs Android 2.3, has 8GB storage, a larger lower resolution screen, lower quality camera, and who know what CPU/GPU.

Personally, I would have liked to see Apple pull off this iPod Touch at $199, not $299. But maybe that is just not reasonable yet.

Posted by doug on October 11, 2012 at 7:44 PM (CDT)


As a further bit about the RAM: 90% of the big profile apps developed for the mobile market are cross platform for Android and iOS…

Guess what’s the standard RAM for just about all high profile Android devices? It ain’t 512MB ;-)

Posted by Code Monkey on October 11, 2012 at 9:29 PM (CDT)


@4: We may have read the same article, we have not apparently been using the same devices. It is not “nice” to have a gigabyte of RAM when both bigger profile iOS devices have a gigabyte RAM, it is a must. I bought a 4G touch when they first launched - what was most notable about its hardware was that it had, ta-da, half the RAM of the iPhone 4. Before the end of the first year of ownership you could count on most new games of any complexity not running on it without frequent crashes (and often just not running) before a couple of updates to optimize memory usage. By the end of this second year of ownership *most* new games of any complexity won’t even run on it, period. It has literally been months since I bought an app more complex than Angry Birds class game because they just won’t run, or if they do, they’ll run at 10 fps and freeze constantly. Apple’s own core apps, including the music app, are now so slow I can often count to over 5 before the screen updates after I switch to it.

Simply put, developers, even Apple developers, do not target the minority bottom line, they target the constraints of the majority bottom line. Last year, the majority of devices had 512MB of RAM from Apple, that means by this time next year, a GB of RAM is what will be the majority bottom line and the 5G touch will become increasingly obsolete with apps until by this time 2014 it will be as much of a piece of garbage as my 4G is today with its 256MB of RAM.

Apple may be charging half as much for this device, but they’re building it to last half as long, so it’s not actually cheaper at all. When you can get decent desktop computers and fantastic big screen TVs and all manner of other entertainment for what I paid for my 5G touch, I expect it to be functional for more than 12 months. That 512MB of RAM all but guarantees that’s the functional lifespan of the device.

As for alternatives, you don’t get out much. For your pocket, you get a nano. For everything else, get a Fire, or a Nexus, or whatever you want. There are so many mini-tablets out there for *less* than the touch that if I weren’t still feeling like the Android software market has only come 90% of the way to meeting the iOS software market it’s what I would have got this year instead of throwing Apple a last chance to impress me. Well, a brand new touch with half the RAM of the current iPhone and iPad does not impress me when I’ve already seen how this plays out in the software market.

Posted by Code Monkey on October 11, 2012 at 9:33 PM (CDT)


I would rather pay a little extra and get the Ipad mini which I will be doing.

Posted by Jake birch on November 10, 2012 at 7:30 PM (CST)

Subscribe to iLounge Weekly

Sign up for the iLounge Weekly Newsletter

iLounge is an independent resource for all things iPod, iPhone, iPad, and beyond.
iPod, iPhone, iPad, iTunes, Apple TV, Mac, and the Apple logo are trademarks of Apple Inc.
iLounge is © 2001 - 2018 iLounge, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Terms of Use | Privacy Policy