iPad2 | Upgrade Your Memory?

As an Apple fanatic, I ordered the iPad2 from Apple yesterday morning and sitting here imagining what it would be like to play with. As I read the various reviews from the zillion web sites who cover it I came across one on 9to5mac that spoke about a teardown of an ipad2 on ifixit.

My Question – Can I UPGRADE the Toshiba 16GB Flash memory chip to say a 64GB?

At first I wondered, why would you ever tear one of these apart?
However, thank you ifixit for doing it because it’s nice to know the component breakdown from anĀ independentĀ source vs. Apple. In the breakdown they mentioned the following components:

  • Toshiba TH58NVG7D2FLA89 16GB NAND Flash (THAT’S IT)

Question? Can I UPGRADE the Toshiba 16GB Flash memory chip to say a 64GB?

Answer: Not sure, this is the participation part as I would like to hear from the experts out there who know. Seems that iPads (non 3G models) are essentially the same device but with upgrades to the flash memory. It also seems that it would be possible to interchange these flash chips, right?

Ok – so let’s assume it’s possible to change the iPad flash memory. Does Apple lock up the full supply chain of these from Toshiba or is it used in other devices? I did a search for the part on Avnet and noticed that stock or ordering was not going to be easy…

So what are your thoughts? Has to be a way to bypass Apple’s pricing for flash memory and upgrade your ipad.



  1. Marc says:

    Isn’t the flash soldered to the board? Also, how would that affect the firmware and the boot sequence?

    • Michael Vorel says:

      Since I posted the question I have not heard of anyone changing it out or whether it’s possible. Update in from http://www.ifixit.com/ – Not Possible! The NAND flash is soldered to the main board, and it does not have an interface that’s compatible with an SSD (or space inside for a drive).

      It is hypothetically possible to replace the flash chips with larger capacity chips, but that would require a sophisticated surface mount de/soldering setup. In English: a semiconductor company could do it, but probably not an individual.

  2. Andrew says:

    I’m sure it could be done. Buy the memory chip for a few hundred dollars, take it to a special technician and pay him/her to install it for a couple of hundred and voila! Possibly a 64 gig iPad 2 for just $400 – $500 more than you paid for a 16 gig version. Which is of course why no one would bother.

  3. Tony says:

    I have smt, bga and board repair and repair board issue. I am familiar with the procedure and if I can get a place to order the IC. I would be able to do it but the questions that remain are like Marc stated, how would it affect the firmware?
    Would it damage the boot sequence? would the OS even see it? would a 64 bit chip require more power and would the
    board not support or get damaged in trying to power it? Is there a security or authentication feature that locks the chip
    in? There are so many question passed the replacing of the IC, which is not terribly difficult at all. I would say trying it on
    a older ipad like a 1 and then switching part or if someone has the IC to try it. You can email me or respond and I have always wondered the same thing. As theoretically this can be done to any device that carries nand memory i.e macbook air, ipod touch, iphone, samsung and the list just goes on.

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