Samsung Galaxy S9, Galaxy S9+ Get Low Repairability Score in iFixit Teardown

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Samsung Galaxy S9, Galaxy S9+ Get Low Repairability Score in iFixit Teardown

Photo Credit: iFixit

Highlights

  • iFixit says several Galaxy S9, S9+ components are replaceable
  • Battery in Galaxy S9+ same as Galaxy S8+, Galaxy Note 7
  • Glass panels, tough adhesive make the phones difficult to repair

Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9+ smartphones are yet to be released by Samsung in many markets, including India. However, DIY repair authority iFixit has brought a detailed teardown to reveal the internals of the new Galaxy S9 series flagship smartphones. While we already know that the new Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9+ have faster processors, better cameras, AKG-tuned dual speakers for enhanced audio, and AR Emojis, among other features, the iFixit teardown assessment reveals many other features.

While there were no surprises found in the specifications department, not unusual as most Android phones are released with detailed list of hardware components (unlike Apple devices), iFixit claimed that the internal design of the Samsung Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9+ "a welcome respite" from its recent destructive teardowns. The iFixit teardown of the two smartphones reveals that several of its components are modular and can be replaced independently. It also added that replacing the batteries is technically possible, but accessing it is an "unnecessary challenge".

As far as the Galaxy S9 is concerned, the report says that the front and back glass in the smartphone leads to double the crackability. Additionally, the strong adhesive also makes it tough to access the internals in case of repairs. Also, due to the curved screen, replacing the front glass without destroying the display is extremely difficult.

When it comes to the Samsung Galaxy S9+, the iFixit teardown report says that the display and rear glass have increased the chance of breakage, which also makes repairs difficult to start. It added that in order to replace the screen, one needs to remove the glass rear panel and disassemble the entire handset while managing the tough adhesive. In conclusion, iFixit gave both the smartphones a repairability score of 4 out of 10.

iFixit also mentioned that the camera sensor arrangement in the Galaxy S9+ is "more sprawling and awkward looking" when compared to the Apple iPhone X. Adding to the optics features, the report said that the standard camera lenses use a minimum of five aperture blades to keep the aperture mostly circular throughout many f-stop adjustments. It said that the Galaxy's aperture sports just two rotating, ring-like blades for its single adjustment.

Further, the report says, that despite the dual image sensors, the double camera on the handset is a "single unit, on a single PCB, with a single connector." It added that the camera line appears to be called Star this time, compared to 2017's Dream cameras. As for the relocated fingerprint sensor, iFixit says the sensor almost became a victim of the teardown as “it got ensnared in some nasty glue as we pried off the back cover."

In terms of battery, the iFixit folks found that the 3.85 V, 3500mAh battery weighing in at 13.48Wh in the Galaxy S9+ was the same as the one found in the Galaxy S8+ and the Galaxy Note 7. Coming to biometrics, iFixit concluded that it may have been too ambitious of Samsung to "jump on Apple's Animoji train without a hardware update to bring it up to speed."

After every smartphone's launch, several technology websites jump on the bandwagon of reviewing them but iFixit's teardowns are quite popular. As the Samsung Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9+ will go on sale in India on March 16, you now know what they pack on the inside just in time.

Is Samsung Galaxy S9 the most value-for-money flagship phone in India? We discussed that on Orbital, our weekly technology podcast, which you can subscribe to via Apple Podcasts or RSS, download the episode, or just hit the play button below.

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  • Design
  • Display
  • Software
  • Performance
  • Battery Life
  • Camera
  • Value for Money
  • Good
  • Excellent build quality and compact design
  • Stereo speakers
  • Good battery life
  • Snappy all-round performance
  • Very good rear camera
  • Vivid HDR display
  • Bad
  • Intelligent Scan feels clunky
  • Attracts fingerprints easily
Display5.80-inch
Processorocta-core
Front Camera8-megapixel
Resolution1440x2960 pixels
RAM4GB
OSAndroid 8.0
Storage64GB
Rear Camera12-megapixel
Battery Capacity3000mAh
  • Design
  • Display
  • Software
  • Performance
  • Battery Life
  • Camera
  • Value for Money
  • Good
  • Excellent build quality
  • Stereo speakers
  • Good battery life
  • Snappy all-round performance
  • Very good rear cameras
  • Vivid HDR display
  • Bad
  • Intelligent Scan feels clunky
  • Attracts fingerprints easily
Display6.20-inch
Processor1.7GHz octa-core
Front Camera8-megapixel
Resolution1440x2960 pixels
RAM6GB
OSAndroid 8.0
Storage64GB
Rear Camera12-megapixel
Battery Capacity3500mAh
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