Teardown reveals Apple TV, iPad likeness

Apple TV and the iPad have a lot in common under the hood, beginning with the A4 chip.

Brooke Crothers Former CNET contributor
Brooke Crothers writes about mobile computer systems, including laptops, tablets, smartphones: how they define the computing experience and the hardware that makes them tick. He has served as an editor at large at CNET News and a contributing reporter to The New York Times' Bits and Technology sections. His interest in things small began when living in Tokyo in a very small apartment for a very long time.
Brooke Crothers
Apple TV is for streaming videos, but it has the hardware to do more.
Apple TV is for streaming videos but it has the hardware to do more Apple

The iPad may not look like an Apple TV unit, but inside there are some striking similarities.

Commentary attached to a teardown of the second-generation Apple TV by iFixit reads a little like a dismantling of an iPad. Similarities are most conspicuously seen in the Apple A4 chip coupled with 256MB of processor RAM--just like in the iPad. And the same Broadcom Wi-Fi chip.

And the flash memory? "Why...it's the same part we found during the iPad teardown!" according to iFixit. Namely, a Samsung 8GB flash chip.

And the 0.6-pound streaming-centric set-top box also uses iOS 4.x, which will be coming to the iPad soon.

It's also pretty green. "A high-efficiency power supply, low 6-watt power consumption, and efficient standby mode lead us to believe this may be the most eco-friendly set-top box of all time," iFixit said.

Apple A4 chip is the same as the iPad's.
The Apple A4 chip is also in the iPad. iFixit

Apple TV main board: A4 chip (red), Samsung NAND flash (orange), Broadcom chip (purple).
Apple TV main board: A4 chip (red), Samsung NAND flash (orange), Broadcom chip (purple). iFixit