iPhone 14 Pro Max Teardown Provides Closer Look at Unused SIM Tray Area on U.S. Model and More

Repair website iFixit today shared an in-depth teardown of the iPhone 14 Pro Max, providing a closer look at the device's internals. Notably, the teardown includes a photo of the plastic spacer that replaced the SIM card tray on the U.S. model.

iPhone 14 Pro Max SIM Card Plastic Spacer
All four iPhone 14 models sold in the U.S. no longer have a physical SIM card tray and rely entirely on digital eSIMs. The teardown confirms that Apple is not using the internal space freed up by the tray's removal for any other component or added functionality, and instead filled in the gap with a square piece of plastic. Outside of the U.S., all iPhone 14 models are still equipped with a SIM card tray in this space.

As seen in previous teardowns, iFixit provided close-up images of the iPhone 14 Pro Max's logic board, which is equipped with a faster A16 Bionic chip and Qualcomm's Snapdragon X65 modem that provides both 5G and satellite connectivity.


While the standard iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus can be opened from the back side, and feature a more repairable design with an easily removable display and back glass panel, these design changes do not extend to the Pro models. The teardown shows that the iPhone 14 Pro Max continues to open from the front and does not have removable back glass. The internal design of the device is largely unchanged from the iPhone 13 Pro Max.

The lack of removable back glass on iPhone 14 Pro models makes repairs more expensive. Without AppleCare+, Apple Stores charge $499 to $549 to fix cracked rear glass on iPhone 14 Pro models, compared to $169 to $199 for standard iPhone 14 models.

iFixit shared a teardown of the iPhone 14 earlier this week.

Related Roundup: iPhone 14 Pro
Related Forum: iPhone

Top Rated Comments

sw1tcher Avatar
1 week ago
So much for all the people who said getting rid of the SIM tray is a good thing as it would mean extra space for Apple to give us something extra (e.g. features, battery capacity, etc.).

We got something extra alright... a chunk of plastic ?
Score: 45 Votes (Like | Disagree)
sw1tcher Avatar
1 week ago

eSim is cool but I still prefer the old sim card tray. I wonder what the extra space will be used for in the iPhone 15.
3.5mm headphone jack? ?
Score: 43 Votes (Like | Disagree)
JPack Avatar
1 week ago

So is there any real benefit for the U.S. models? Better water resistance? (Speaking of, where will they put the ingress indicator?) Or, is it just cost cutting?
Pure cost cutting. But good morning!



Attachment Image
Score: 34 Votes (Like | Disagree)
JPack Avatar
1 week ago
Kinda funny since that plastic spacer serves no meaningful purpose at all.

Apple preaches environmental benefits when they removed the power adapter and EarPods. With no SIM slot on the U.S. model, they decide to generate plastic waste by putting in a spacer. It serves no purpose except hope nobody remembers what's supposed to be underneath it.
Score: 29 Votes (Like | Disagree)
deathcab Avatar
1 week ago
Odd decision to remove but not utilize the space, especially since it limits carrier choice in many instances - including in the US as many prepaid and MVNO carriers do not yet support eSim (and can’t until the Big 3 allow them to since most run on their networks). This move also disables hardware-based unlocks that worked with physical sims such as R-Sim, though those workarounds are admittedly sketchy in their own right.

I still wonder if the Big 3 carriers influenced this change to limit competition and create friction for switching to other carriers.

(post edited for clarity)
Score: 23 Votes (Like | Disagree)
mihirdelirious Avatar
1 week ago
the COURAGE. What a shame ! All advantages of the eSIM were still present in the previous iPhones; 13, 12, 11, as well as the XR/XS back in 2018. And they all also had a physical SIM slot
Score: 22 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Related Stories

iPhone 14 Opens From Back

iFixit Shares iPhone 14 Teardown, Praises New Design With Easily Removable Display and Back Glass

Monday September 19, 2022 7:41 am PDT by
Repair website iFixit today shared a video teardown of the standard iPhone 14. In a blog post, iFixit CEO Kyle Wiens praised the device's more repairable internal design, calling it the most substantial iPhone redesign since the iPhone X. As was mentioned in a few reviews, the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus are the first iPhone models that can be opened from the back side of the device since...
iPhone 15 to Switch From Lightning to USB C in 2023 feature sans arrow

Kuo: iPhone 14 Pro Max Popularity Could Lead to More Differentiation Between iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max

Wednesday September 28, 2022 10:22 am PDT by
Apple has seen high demand for the 6.7-inch iPhone 14 Pro Max, which could lead the company to further differentiate the next-generation iPhone 15 Pro and Pro Max, according to Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. Apple could add exclusive features to the iPhone 15 Pro Max in an effort to encourage more people to purchase the larger and more expensive device. Kuo last week said that Apple asked...
iphone 14 pro dynamic island

iPhone 14 Pro Max Lasts Two Hours Longer Than iPhone 13 Pro Max in Battery Test

Wednesday September 14, 2022 10:23 am PDT by
The new iPhone 14 Pro Max lasts two hours longer than last year's iPhone 13 Pro Max, according to a battery test conducted by Tom's Guide meant to simulate real-life usage. In its review of the iPhone 14 Pro Max, Tom's Guide said that the iPhone 14 Pro Max lasted an average 14 of hours and 42 minutes on a single full charge. In a similar test, the iPhone 13 Pro Max lasted 12 hours and 16...
maxresdefault

iPhone 14 Pro Max Pitted Against Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra in Drop Test Showdown

Tuesday September 20, 2022 9:59 am PDT by
Drop tests and durability tests are standard after any new iPhone release, and the iPhone 14 Pro is no exception, with YouTubers subjecting the device to all manner of tests to see how it fares against competing smartphones and past iPhones. PhoneBuff this morning shared a drop test video that pits the iPhone 14 Pro Max against Samsung's Galaxy S22 Ultra to see which one is more durable....
iphone 14 pro max camera bump compared lipilipsi 16 9

Bigger iPhone 14 Pro Max Camera Bump Shown Alongside iPhone 13 Pro Max

Monday August 8, 2022 4:33 am PDT by
The camera bump on the upcoming iPhone 14 Pro Max is expected to be the largest rear lens housing Apple has ever installed on its flagship smartphones, and a new photo offers a rare glimpse at just how prominent it is compared to Apple's predecessor device. iPhone 14 Pro Max dummy (left) vs iPhone 13 Pro Max All iPhone 14 models are expected to see upgrades to the Ultra Wide camera on the...
f1662572972

Apple Removes SIM Card Tray on All iPhone 14 Models in U.S.

Wednesday September 7, 2022 11:09 am PDT by
Apple today announced that all iPhone 14 models sold in the U.S. do not have a built-in SIM card tray and instead rely entirely on eSIM technology. Tech specs on Apple's website confirm the iPhone 14, iPhone 14 Plus, iPhone 14 Pro, and iPhone 14 Pro Max are not compatible with physical SIM cards and instead have dual eSIM support, allowing for multiple cellular plans to be activated on a...
iphone 14 pro max teardown pkbreviews 1

Video Offers First Look Inside iPhone 14 Pro Max With New Display, Larger Cameras, and More

Thursday September 15, 2022 1:34 am PDT by
A new video has revealed our first look inside the iPhone 14 Pro Max, showing an L-shaped battery, updated placements of display components, larger cameras, and more, just days ahead of when new iPhone 14 models are expected to begin arriving to customers. The early teardown was done by PBKreviews and shows an internal design that looks similar to last year's iPhone 13 Pro Max but with a few ...
iPhone 14 Pros in Hand Black Background Feature

iPhone 14 Pro Max Earns Best Smartphone Display Award, Replacing iPhone 13 Pro Max

Tuesday September 27, 2022 2:16 pm PDT by
The iPhone 14 Pro Max offers the best smartphone display on the market, according to DisplayMate's annual Display Technology Shoot-Out. Earning the "DisplayMate Best Smartphone Display Award" with an A+ Display Performance grade, the iPhone 14 Pro Max replaces last year's winner, the iPhone 13 Pro Max. While the iPhone 14 Pro Max has essentially the same resolution as the iPhone 13 Pro Max,...

Popular Stories

apple watch ultra hammer test

YouTuber Tests Apple Watch Ultra Durability With a Hammer: Table Breaks Before the Watch

Sunday September 25, 2022 2:27 pm PDT by
A YouTuber has put Apple's claims for the durability of the Apple Watch Ultra to the test by putting it up against a drop test, a jar of nails, and repeated hits with a hammer to test the sapphire crystal protecting the display. TechRax, a channel popular for testing the durability of products, first tested the Apple Watch Ultra by dropping it from around four feet high. The Apple Watch...
tim cook spring loaded event

Six Major Products to Expect From Apple in 2023

Sunday September 25, 2022 10:57 am PDT by
As we approach the end of a busy product release season for Apple with only new iPads and Macs left to be announced over the next month or so, we're also setting our sights on 2023. Apple is rumored to have several major products in the pipeline for next year, including new Macs, a new HomePod, a VR/AR headset, and so much more. Other than new iPhones and Apple Watches, which are expected...
apple watch ultra deuglify 1

Apple Watch Ultra User Mods Titanium Casing to 'Deuglify' Design

Tuesday September 27, 2022 8:05 am PDT by
An Apple Watch Ultra user has modified their new device's casing to add a brushed finish and remove the orange color of the Action Button in an effort to make it more visually appealing. The Apple Watch Ultra offers the first complete redesign of the Apple Watch since the product line's announcement in 2014, and while the design has been met with praise from many users, some have criticized...
General iOS 16 Feature Yellow

Some iOS 16 Users Continue to Face Unaddressed Bugs and Battery Drain Two Weeks After Launch

Monday September 26, 2022 7:34 am PDT by
Today marks exactly two weeks since Apple released iOS 16 to the public. Besides the personalized Lock Screen, major changes in Messages, and new features in Maps, the update has also seen its fair share of bugs, performance problems, battery drain, and more. After major iOS updates, it's normal for some users to report having issues with the new update, but such reports usually subside in...
iPhone 14 Pro Sports Scores Dynamic Island

iPhone 14 Pro Features Live Sports Scores in Dynamic Island on iOS 16.1

Monday September 26, 2022 7:52 am PDT by
Earlier this month, Apple announced that iOS 16.1 will enable a new Live Activities feature that allows iPhone users to stay on top of things that are happening in real time, such as a sports game or a food delivery order, right from the Lock Screen. On the iPhone 14 Pro and Pro Max, Live Activities also integrate with the Dynamic Island. Premier League match in Dynamic Island via Paul Bradford ...
iPhone 14 Pros in Hand Black Background Feature

Verizon iPhone 14 Pro Customers Reporting Cellular Connection Issues

Monday September 26, 2022 6:23 am PDT by
iPhone 14 Pro customers on the Verizon network in the U.S. are reporting issues with slow and unreliable 5G cellular connections and calls randomly dropping. Several threads on Reddit (1,2,3) and the MacRumors forums chronicle issues faced by Verizon customers and Apple's latest iPhone. According to user reports, signal strength on the iPhone 14 Pro is unreliable and weak, while other...
Tim Cook Apple Event

Gurman: New iPads and Macs May Be Announced Through Press Releases, No October Event

Sunday September 25, 2022 6:50 am PDT by
Apple may decide to release its remaining products for 2022, which include updated iPad Pro, Mac mini, and 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models, through press releases on its website rather than a digital event, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. In his latest Power On newsletter, Gurman said that Apple is currently "likely to release its remaining 2022 products via press releases,...
Stage Manager Extension Thumb 1

New iPadOS 16.1 Beta Expands Stage Manager to Older iPad Pro Models, Delays External Display Support

Tuesday September 27, 2022 10:24 am PDT by
The most recent beta of iPadOS 16.1 expands the controversial Stage Manager feature to older iPads, allowing it to work with iPad Pro models that have an A12X or A12Z chip, according to information Apple provided to Engadget. The beta also removes the external display support from Stage Manager for the current time, with the feature set to return in a later iPadOS 16 update. Apple's...
iOS 16

Everything New in the Latest iOS 16.1 and iPadOS 16.1 Betas: Stage Manager Expansion, Wallpaper Tweaks and More

Tuesday September 27, 2022 11:36 am PDT by
Apple today released new betas of iOS 16.1 and iPadOS 16.1 to developers, tweaking some of the functionality that's been introduced in prior betas and in the case of iPadOS 16.1, adding a major new feature to Stage Manager. We've rounded up everything new in both betas below. Wallpaper Updates Apple has updated the Wallpaper section of the Settings app to allow users to swap between...
john meyer ultra

Apple Watch Ultra Praised by Watch World Tastemaker John Mayer

Monday September 26, 2022 4:42 am PDT by
Apple Watch Ultra has been endorsed by American musician and famous watch collector John Mayer, who has been showing off the new device on his Instagram account. "Been wearing the Apple Watch Ultra for a week... and it's great," writes Mayer over a photo of the watch. "The first Apple Watch that excited me as a mechanical watch collector." "It's loaded with capability and what I call...