Slimmer iPhone 7 with larger battery may be in store thanks to unique 'fan-out' A10 chipset


The iPhone 6s is already pretty slim at 7.1mm, yet Apple is said to make the iPhone 7 even thinner, according to the rumor mill, by eschewing the 3.5mm audio jack altogether, replacing it with a Lightning port connector for the bundled in-ear headphones. That's not the only trick Apple would employ to reach the speculated 6mm and change thickness of the new iPhone, though, claims Korean media.

Apparently, Apple may be using the so-called "fan-out" chip packaging method for the first time in a handset with the iPhone 7, resulting in a more compact motherboard and antenna area, leaving extra space inside for an eventual larger battery to sprawl, despite the purported thinner chassis. This packaging technology fuses the silicon chips and the semiconductor compounds together, resulting in more powerful yet more compact chippery.

All welcome changes, but not the only benefits of the "fan-out" tech. It is actually the ASM (Antenna Switching Module) that will see advantages of merging the silicon chip with GaAs (Gallium Arsenide) semiconductor compound, as is tipped to happen in the iPhone 7.  Gallium arsenide is good for receiving high-frequency signals with little interference, improving on the signal penetration, but so far two modules were needed on the circuit board, whereas merging them in one with "fan-out" will now save space, yet have the same level of antenna efficiency.


The source of this rumor are, as usual, a few suppliers - Apple has allegedly given big orders to ASM makers from Japan and other places that produce the antenna units with "fan-out" technology. In addition, TSMC itself has mentioned that it is producing a big part of its 16nm wafers with "fan-out" for one sole customer. It stopped short of naming Apple, but by now we've heard numerous times that the foundry is tasked with producing the upcoming A10 chipset that will be used for the iPhone 7. Apple is said to use this method for other motherboard components inside the new iPhones, too, so we can't wait to see the final result this fall or thereabouts.

Related phones

iPhone 7
  • Display 4.7" 750 x 1334 pixels
  • Camera 12 MP / 7 MP front
  • Processor Apple A10 Fusion, Quad-core, 2340 MHz
  • Storage 256 GB
  • Battery 1960 mAh(14h 3G talk time)

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82 Comments

1. darkkjedii

Posts: 31283; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

Don't disappoint Apple, this one needs to be a home run like the 6 & 4.

3. Arch_Fiend

Posts: 3951; Member since: Oct 03, 2015

6 and 4 lol, more like 5s and 6s.

19. darkkjedii

Posts: 31283; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

Guess you missed my point.

26. Arch_Fiend

Posts: 3951; Member since: Oct 03, 2015

Now I know you were being sarcastic but I couldn't tell from the OP sorry.

8. NoToFanboys

Posts: 3231; Member since: Oct 03, 2015

I don't like this stupid thinness trend though.

17. darkkjedii

Posts: 31283; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

Neither do I. The current line of smartphones across the landscape are thin enough.

33. NoToFanboys

Posts: 3231; Member since: Oct 03, 2015

If they made an 8mm thick iPhone 6S with a big battery I would deifinitely get one.

49. darkkjedii

Posts: 31283; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

I just don't get it with this thinness craze. Where does it end? It can only go so far, before it's a drop hazard, and the battery life is ruined. They need to bring watch battery technology into cell phones lol. Those things last forever.

51. NoToFanboys

Posts: 3231; Member since: Oct 03, 2015

I don't know, it's definitely getting rediculous. I have two questions though, dont Apple users tell Apple that they want bigger batteries more than thinness? If they do, do Apple listen to their users? Just curious, I'm not anti-Apple.

56. darkkjedii

Posts: 31283; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

I couldn't tell you bro, I try not to get into that. I wonder if they'd even listen.

76. kenaldinho4444

Posts: 66; Member since: Jun 05, 2015

I honestly think they don't, they just make a new device and sell it to customers and that's it. #750p

53. Finalflash

Posts: 4063; Member since: Jul 23, 2013

They're doing it to save money and that is all. Ever penny saved is millions more for Apple and therefore, they can pretend that they provide value with thinness to save millions in materials and components.

57. darkkjedii

Posts: 31283; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

It's a million saved for all of em, not just Apple. Stop fanboying dude.

60. VapeSir

Posts: 24; Member since: Apr 04, 2016

Listen dude Apple is well known to milk it's fans. By providing a Apple logo. Suddenly Apple after 30 years Apple is a brand phone rather than tech phone. They've been trying for 30 years to succeed and from no-where they accomplish. Yeah they use 7000 series aluminium which is still cheaper than metal.

61. zunaidahmed

Posts: 1185; Member since: Dec 24, 2011

Dude, isn't aluminum a type of metal, what's ur freaking point. "A BMW is cheaper than a car", that doesn't even make any sense. Yes, aluminum is cheaper than gold, platinum, but not all metal...

64. darkkjedii

Posts: 31283; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

LMAOOOOO! You just won the internet bro. +1

65. VapeSir

Posts: 24; Member since: Apr 04, 2016

It is a metal although it is not in the transition metals, because it is ductile and conducts electricity. Other metals that are not transition metals are...

62. darkkjedii

Posts: 31283; Member since: Feb 05, 2011

Go away Arte. Oh, and by the way....aluminum is metal dumb ass.

71. TechieXP1969

Posts: 14967; Member since: Sep 25, 2013

Watch batteries dont have a special technology. Those batteries would last only mere minutes if they were driving a 2GHz CPU, 1080p display and more. I mean come on man. A watch where all the battery is moving is hands, isn''t consuming any power. You're asking for the wrong thing specifically. But i do understand your point. What I think would be good is a phone that has solar cells on the front and rear of the phone so that it can be slowly charge with light which would charge a battery back 1% when it loses 1%.

40. Dee79

Posts: 307; Member since: Jun 19, 2014

The reason I like phones getting thinner is you can put a solid case on them but without much more bulk but still keep ya phone protected..

52. medtxa

Posts: 1655; Member since: Jun 02, 2014

Its not that i crazy like about thin phone its just that 9mm above is not proporsionaly thin anymore.

28. vincelongman

Posts: 5720; Member since: Feb 10, 2013

Fan-out and 2.5D packaging is pretty exciting tech IMO It allows multiple dies to be placed closely together One day in the future, they will be able to split up the SoC die e.g. Two CPU dies, two CPU core per CPU die Four GPU dies, four GPU "clusters" per GPU die And RAM/VRAM, memory and radios/modem there too, all one one interposer Leading to a smaller PCB, improved thermals and yields Especially for desktops, laptops and consoles 2.5D packaging (only GPU + VRAM on the same interposer) is already being used in AMD's Fury GPUs Its also going to be used in Nvidia's upcoming Pascal GPUs and AMD's upcoming Vega GPUs (maybe their Polaris 10 GPU too) AMD's Navi (2018) seems like it will have multiple GPU dies on the same interposer, will be interesting to see if Nvidia's Volta is like that too

32. elitewolverine

Posts: 5192; Member since: Oct 28, 2013

I want the HBM ram on phones

80. vincelongman

Posts: 5720; Member since: Feb 10, 2013

AFAIK HBM is to power hungry for mobiles Samsung is developing WideIO for mobiles, which is similar to HBM but less power hungry

66. janis

Posts: 397; Member since: Mar 10, 2014

i will try iphone once again when it will have full day battery not that stupid thickness with that 750 screen BS.

2. Arch_Fiend

Posts: 3951; Member since: Oct 03, 2015

Interesting to say the least. For once maybe the next # iPhone will be an actual upgrade over the lastest S model

6. BradyCrack

Posts: 835; Member since: Dec 29, 2015

They may as well get rid off the "s" models IMO. Bad marketing.

13. Arch_Fiend

Posts: 3951; Member since: Oct 03, 2015

The S models are the best tho, why should they get rid of them? If you're an Apple fan you should upgrade off the S model years rather than the # model years. The only reason Apple would have to Axe the S model would be that they have decided to make changes to the design every year. Honestly I think Apple should make significant changes to the design of the # model every 2 years linke usual and make slight improvements to the # model design that the S model adopts, it would make the S model more appealing.

44. BradyCrack

Posts: 835; Member since: Dec 29, 2015

I'm not asking for a complete redesign every year, maybe something smaller like removing the protruding camera, or removing the antenna bands (wait a second). The the "s" models are probably the reason for declining iPhone sales, they keep the same design and add a "s" to the title, and usually add some gimmicky feature(except Touch ID). A lot of people don't even know the "s" models exist! Heck, I can't point out the 6s! They look like 2014's model! Wouldn't it be better marketing wise if they make 2017's model the iPhone 8 with a slight revamped iPhone 7 design?

48. Arch_Fiend

Posts: 3951; Member since: Oct 03, 2015

Did you not fully read my comment lol. Because I said this. "Honestly I think Apple should make significant changes to the design of the # model every 2 years like usual and make slight improvements to the # model design that the S model adopts, it would make the S model more appealing" So you should know my answer is yes and the iPhone doesn't have gimmicky features just saying.

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