Apple's iPhone 14 / Pro series equipped with YMTC NAND is an oolong

Recently, there have been many media reports that some iPhone 14 Pros use YMTC storage chips (flash memory), and the referenced evidence is the early dismantling evaluation video of Weifeng Technology Bogo.

Weifeng Technology Bogo said in the latest iPhone 14 Pro video: "The biggest change is this hard drive, which is the same size as the YMTC hard drive used on the SE3. We thought it was also YMTC's at first, but in fact, it is Toshiba."

In the dismantling video of the iPhone 14 Pro Max, Weifeng Technology Boge said: "Remove this motherboard sticker, and the hard disk is below. From the marked numbers, it cannot be seen that the small hard disk on the SE3 is from Changjiang Storage. When I dismantled the 14 Pro, I was too excited, thinking that as long as this small hard drive was YMTC. I hoped it was the same, but it’s actually.” After the video was queried through the software, it showed that the hard drive manufacturer was Toshiba rather than YMTC.

From this point of view, it may be an oolong event that the iPhone 14 series of mobile phones use the memory chips of YMTC, so how did such an oolong happen?

 Chip Identification: Appearance

If you want to identify a chip, the first thing is to look at its appearance. The appearance is mainly divided into two aspects, packaging and silk screen.

The packaging of the chip simply refers to the outermost shell of the chip product, and the identification of the chip from the packaging point of view depends on the size and specific shape of this shell.

Take the LGA 3647 Intel Xeon CPU and the LGA 2011 Intel Xeon CPU, for example, these two series of CPUs obviously use different packages. The package used by the LGA 3647 is significantly larger and rectangular. The package size of the LGA 2011 is small and closer to a square.

But only by packaging identification chips can only guess, there are too many chips with the same package. Take the LGA 2011 Intel Xeon CPU as an example, the E5-2660 uses this package, and the i7-4960X also uses this package.

In the fields of MOSFET, MCU, and memory chips, it is more common for multiple chips to use one package.

For example, Toshiba launched five new MOSFET gate driver chips in June this year. Although the specific performance parameters of these five new MOSFET gate driver chips are different, they all use the "WCSP6G" package.

The reason why chip manufacturers sell multiple chips in the same package is mainly for design reuse. For the CPU, often a motherboard can support multiple models of CPU. For other chips that do not use sockets and need to be soldered, multiple chips can share a set of peripheral circuits or PCB designs.

The silkscreen of a chip refers to the code printed or engraved on the surface of the chip, which generally contains information such as the chip manufacturer's trademark, product model, and performance parameters.

Taking the Intel Xeon series CPU as an example, there are copyright marks, processor model, CPU speed, serial number, and other information on the "silk screen" of the Intel Xeon series CPU. In addition, since many of Intel's chips are sold directly to consumers, the specific information of these silkscreens is also given on Intel's official website.

The silkscreen information of companies like Intel will be written more clearly and in detail, but some chips are designed for internal use by other companies. Since the information of the corresponding chips does not need to be provided to non-professionals, the silk screen information is not so detailed. For professionals, if you want to get detailed information about the chip, you only need to query the chip specification provided by the manufacturer.

Taking the memory chip used in the iPhone 14 Pro as an example, this is a line of alphanumeric combinations, plus a QR code for internal identification, without even the manufacturer's mark. That is to say, it is difficult to judge which manufacturer this chip comes from without the internal documentation of the relevant manufacturer.

In addition, for the memory chip industry, it is normal for different chip manufacturers to launch chip products in the same package for product compatibility.

And this Oolong incident is because the silkscreen on the chip cannot be queried, and it is judged that the chip is stored by the Yangtze River only by the packaging style. After all, it is very common for multiple chips to use the same package, so such a judgment is easy to overturn.

Chip Qualification: Software

A lot of software can detect the information of the device hardware and the chip used. In the case of no intentional modification, the result of the software identification is quite accurate.

For PC, we can use AIDA64, HWiNFO, CPU-Z, Master Lu, and other third-party software to easily view the configuration information of the computer.

In addition to third-party software, device manufacturers also provide software to detect and upgrade their own branded hardware.

Taking the hard disk in the computer as an example, companies like Intel, Samsung, Toshiba, and Western Digital have launched corresponding management and testing software for their own hard disk products.

For example, the Intel Memory and Storage Tool (Intel MAS) can detect information about the Intel hard drives installed on the computer.

For mobile phones, there is similar software that can achieve this kind of function, such as Aisi Assistant. Taking this iPhone SE3 as an example, through the query on Aisi Assistant, the supplier of this mobile phone's hard drive is Hynix.

Therefore, identifying the chip through software is actually the simplest and most accurate identification method (without manual modification). However, the identification method of this software requires the mobile phone to be turned on and activated before it can be used. Apple also strictly requires that it is not activated in advance, so this identification method is not feasible for those who get the mobile phone in advance and want to do the evaluation.


  • Apple does not allow the phone to be turned on and activated in advance, otherwise, it will lead to corresponding penalties. But if it is not turned on or activated, it seems feasible to just take it apart and see. (Not from a legal point of view, only from a technical point of view) Some of the earlier teardown review videos actually did the same.
  • In the case of disassembly and inspection, it can only be identified by the appearance of the chip (ie packaging and silkscreen). Since Apple does not disclose related documents for silk screen naming, some chips cannot be identified by silk screen printing.
  • For the chip industry, looking like is not necessarily related to blood. It is easy to overturn the chip to identify the chip based on what the package "looks like".
  • Identification through software is one of the important means of identifying chips, and the identification results are very accurate without deliberate modification.
  • When the chip silk screen can be checked, the chip model can also be accurately identified by the chip silk screen. (except when the chip silk screen is modified)
  • The modification of the chip silk screen is mainly realized by grinding the original chip silk screen and printing a new silk screen, or directly replacing the chip package.

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