How does Apple screw up your iPhone? With screws, of course! But as the good folks at iFixit point out, these are no ordinary screws.
Early iPhone 4 handsets shipped with Phillips #00 screws holding the case together (these are the screws near the connector dock), which while being tiny, were easy to undo. But iPhone 4 handsets in other countries, as well as newer handsets in the US are fitted with different screws.
No, it's no ordinary screw. It's a nasty, hard-to-remove tamper-resistant screws called a "Pentalobe."
These new screws are NOT TORX screws, are NOT TORX security screws, and are NOT TORX PLUS screws.
To make matters worse, if you take an old iPhone 4 into to Apple for repair, the old Phillips #00 will be replaced with these Pentalobe screws, making DIY repairs tricky. These screws are so tiny that they're easily chewed up if tackled with the wrong tools.
But iFixit has a solution - the iPhone 4 liberation kit. This kit comes with everything you need - a Pentalobe driver, 2 replacement PHILLIPS screws, and a regular #00 Phillips screwdriver - to swap out these nasty screws with ordinary screws. Priced at $9.95 it's not going to break the bank.
Apple also uses the Pentalobe screws inside the MacBook Pro and on the shell of the new MacBook Air (these are bigger than the tiny ones used on the iPhone though).