The tech behemoth, well known for its “look but don’t modify” stance on its hardware, is using a new type of screw on the iPhone 4. Why?
The tamper-resistant screw, which is similar to Torx security screws, will stop users easily taking off the outside case which protects the electronics of their devices. Instead, Apple product owners will have to take their piece of hardware to an Apple engineer or try to purchase a special screwdriver, which will no doubt be very expensive.
The screw, known as the pentalobe, is relatively obscure. And that’s the point. Apple apparently wants to use these unusual screws so people who own the iPhones can’t open them up. Some might argue that this is like selling someone a car and bolting the hood shut so they can’t check the engine.
Kyle Wiens, chief executive of iFixit, a prominent Apple repair and parts supplier, said the purpose of the new screws is to keep people out of the iPhone and prevent them from replacing the battery.
For most people, this isn’t a big deal. The screws are really only meant to dissuade adventurous and savvy technical wizards who want to see what makes their iPhones tick.
Apple may be using an unusual kind of screw. But people are more determined than ever to knock it loose.