As Android Wear devices show up on people’s doorsteps around the world, it’s time to see what the good folks over at iFixit think about the innards and the repairability of these new watches. They’ve taken apart both the LG G Watch and the Samsung Gear Live but obviously still await the arrival of the Moto 360.
The Samsung Gear Live is first on the repair bench. The Gear Live gets a pretty good report card from the iFixit team, who took time to note that there are many pluses from their standpoint on the Gear Live. The band is quite easily replaceable, THe case is easy to open, even with the water-resistant construction and the battery is easily replaceable.
There are down-sides, there are several small PCBs which are adhered to the unit which present ‘a challenge’ when making repairs and the fused display assembly glued to the chasis makes a screen replacement ‘a dubious and costly proposition.’
Overall, the Gear Live gets an 8 out of 10 for repairability – equalling the score awarded to the Gear 2.
The LG G Watch is next up, with the iFixit team attacking the White and Gold version of the G Watch. The colour obviously doesn’t matter when it comes down to the repairability, which iFixit found to be excellent.
There are some really good points about the LG G Watch, when it came to tearing it down. The team at iFixit found that the rear of the case is easy to remove, due to the screws and spring contacts. The battery is held in place with a single phillips head screw and a bit of adhesive making for easy replacement. The band removal is slightly more difficult to remove, but nothing too frustrating and finally, there are few fragile cables and connectors inside the case, making for ‘a more robust, repair-ready device.’
There was a downside to the repairability and like the Gear Live it involves a fused display. The display is glued to the front of the device which ‘makes screen replacement a little difficult and costly.’ LG G Watch Repairability Score: 9 out of 10 (10 is easiest to repair)
A 9 out of 10 for repairability means that the G Watch is a real winner for any repairs you may have to do in the future.
Both the Gear Live and the G Watch have a pretty easily replaceable band, and a fairly easy to replace battery – two of the most important things that most users are looking for in a watch when it comes to user intervention. Beyond that, it’s probably a good idea to contact your local service centre for any repairs. If you want to see the Gear Live and G Watch torn down, check out the iFixit video below: