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The Most (and Least) Repairable Phones We Took Apart in 2016

The Most (and Least) Repairable Phones We Took Apart in 2016


In 2016, we took apart everything from the
iPhone 7 to the now recalled Note7. After every teardown, we assign the phones
a repairability score based on a number of factors including ease-of-disassembly, the
types of fasteners on the insides, and the complexity involved in replacing major components. Here’s how some of this year’s more notable
phones did on our teardown table: Coming in with a repairability score of 8
out of 10 The LG G5 was the most repairable phone we took apart this year. The LGG5 was one of the few phones we saw
this year that still had a user replaceable battery, but it also favored standard phillips
screws and used no adhesive. Making it one easy phone to repair. But the Google Pixel xl and the iPhone 7 line
were right on LG’s tail, all earning 7/10. The iphone 7 and 7 Plus both had a battery
that was fairly straightforward to access and with the addition of the solid state home
button a common point of failure was eliminated making it more durable. The Google Pixel XL also garnered a score
of 7 out of 10 and had an opening procedure much like iphones of old. The Pixel XL’s score was thanks to it use
of modular easy to replace components, the inclusion of a battery removal tab and using
only standard t5 torxscrews The iPhone SE, Apple’s affordable-ish alternative,
didn’t do too badly either, grabbing a mid-pack 6 out of 10. Part of that score is due to the similarities
to the 5s. So repairs on the SE are already excellently
documented, in addition the SE’s display can be removed first and the battery is fairly
easy to access. Samsung’s flagship phones, on the other
hand, tanked this year. The Note7 only mustered a 4—though exploding
batteries forced Samsung to recall those phones before they had a chance to break. At the rear of the pack: the Samsung Galaxy
S7/Edge. They were the least repairable phones we took
apart in 2016. This is mostly due to the display glass. Replacing the glass without destroying the
display is nearly impossible. In years past, Galaxy phones have been very
modular, so it’s a little sad for us to see Samsung go down the path of glued-together
phones. Of course, thousands of models of phones were
released this year. We can’t take them all apart, so it’s
likely some very repairable and very not repairable phones also deserve a mention on this list. If you know of one, tell us about it in the
comments. And be sure to check out all our other teardowns
on iFixit.com/teardowns. and If you can’t wait to see what makes it on our teardown
table in 2017 be sure to subscribe to our channel, Folow us on twitter and give us a
like on Facebook at facebook.com/ifixit.

24 thoughts on “The Most (and Least) Repairable Phones We Took Apart in 2016”

  1. Hello . i just subscribed this channel because of professor Zack's recommendation.
    He was right. this is a good channel. like pressed.

  2. earlier last year i smashed up my nexus 6P, it cost me just under £100 to have it repaired at the local shop, i watched the teardown and it scared the crap out of me

  3. hello how do I get in touch with you guy? I ordered the business pro tool kit and it's missing something. I have emailed you guys but no one is getting back with me on the issue.

  4. "Sam-Suck" the glue they use to keep the S7 & S7 edge held together!

    I got harsh on apple for sealing the iPad 2 battery in so deep it requires device expert deluxe + time & frustration to simply change the battery. On a positive note the original battery in my ancient iPad 2 still works great! To have a lithium ion battery hold up well like this is amazing, Apple did something truly special in the battery back then. Probably really good quality control & quality analysis at the cell manufacturing stage where the lithium ion batteries were properly calendared, formatted correctly with 3 full cycles and then shipped half charged.

    Samsung once upon a time made fun of Apple, with Apple's not-so quick to change battery, in Samsung advertisements showing iPhone users tethered to a wall charger as a Samsung Galaxy phone user sleekly swapped out his phones easily user replaceable battery on the go.

    Sealing the lithium ion battery inside a phone with glue & adhesive that is hard to access represents a betrayal of consumers who are gentle with their devices. This is especially true since Samsung shipped the Note 7 with a bunk funky battery that was prone to catching fire, like so many cheap Chinese hover-board ripoff clones of the Segway technology.

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