Can you image upgrading a 16GB iPhone to 128GB by spending only $25? That’s what Scotty Allen from Strange Parts YouTube channel has done. Using spare parts available in Shenzhen, China, and a number of tools, he was able to remove the 16GB storage flash chip and solder a 128GB flash chip in its place. The process is documented over a 30+ minutes long video and is extremely interesting to watch.
This is not the first time that Scotty Allen has attempted to modify his iPhone. He previously assembled a working iPhone, all by himself, using spare parts and internals from used but non-functional iPhones. He also gained popularity for adding a headphone jack to iPhone 7. The iPhone in which Scotty replaced the storage memory has already received 2 upgrades – a glowing logo and a laser engraved body.
While the video claims to upgrade the iPhone’s memory by 800%, Scotty had to go through a lot of trouble to do that. Fortunately for him, being located in Shenzhen, China helps a lot. He was able to get used logic boards just for practice as well as extra storage memory flash chips. He already has a soldering iron, a hot air gun and a microscope – tools which the average user would not have at home. An important part of the equation was the PCIE Nand Flash Memory Chip Programmer required to program the flash chips to work when installed in a different logic board. This required a Windows PC while Scotty is a Mac user, so he also had to spend money buying a Xiaomi notebook. Apart from all these expenses, Scotty also has the skill and experience to take apart and put back together an iPhone.
In the end, the complete cost for upgrading the memory chip becomes way more than $25 which is the cost for the standalone 128GB flash memory chip. Is this something that normal users can do? No. But, if you live in Shenzhen, China, chances are that there are shops that are happy to do it for you. Of course, this voids your iPhone’s warranty and is also risky – there is a good chance that your iPhone might end up not working.
The complete upgrade process in the video gives a fascinating view into the shops and equipment and Shenzhen. However, note that this is not something entirely new. I have added another video below by REWA Technology YouTube Channel which is from 2016 and shows an iPhone 6S getting the 128GB storage upgrade.
P.S. Watch out for the Xiaomi Store in Scotty’s video which looks like an exact replica of an Apple Store. From the logo, colors to how products are showcased on tablets as well as employee uniforms – Xiaomi’s Store is completely inspired by Apple Stores.