updated 03:30 pm EST, Mon February 7, 2011
iFixit deconstructs CDMA iPhone for Verizon
Verizon's iPhone has been deconstructed today in a teardown that has revealed more changes than just the need for a switch to CDMA. iFixit's look discovered that the phone is using Qualcomm's MDM6600, a chipset that can handle not just the CDMA and EVDO needed for the network but also GSM and up to 14.4Mbps HSPA+. The part suggests Apple could have designed a dual-mode phone but didn't for the iPhone 4, likely due to space constraints in the existing frame.
The examination also showed that Apple is using a different battery. Although it has the same capacity, the new battery is over a gram lighter and should lead to a slightly easier to carry phone. The absence of a SIM slot also expectedly helps reduce the weight and changes the layout inside. The mechanical vibrator has been removed. Since a vibrator still exists, it's likely the vibrator has been pulled or built into another part.
An empty solder contact point on one side of the board is unusual, but it may be the SIM slot's connection.
Other details are still in flux for the in-progress teardown, but the phone doesn't have any known fundamental changes so far underneath apart from the cellular hardware. Apple's redesign has mostly focused on tuning reception and adjusting for the newly shuffled components.