Year by year it seems that phones are getting thinner and thinner and because of this space inside the device is becoming more and more premium. Manufacturers are saving space by putting components as close together as possible and as a result it is making them harder and harder to repair.
This week iFixit ran their tools over the new Samsung Galaxy S10 and S10e and found that it was even more difficult to repair than its predecessor scoring it a miserly three out of 10.
As you would expect when packing components in so tightly there is a lot of strong adhesive glue sprinkled throughout, making repairs more difficult, especially when related to display or battery replacement. iFixit had to use a lot of their adhesive remover to take the devices apart. They also commented on the lack of pull tabs for the “heavily adhered” batteries making them difficult to remove.
The displays were extremely difficult to remove with the curved display on the S10 only slightly more difficult than the flat one on the S10e. The S10 has the ultrasonic fingerprint display glued to the back of it making it tough to remove without breakage of it.
iFixit concluded that the batteries were large but not easily replaceable, the wireless charging of other devices makes a lot of heat and probably isn’t great for long-term battery life, and that replacement of the displays will be a difficult and pricey process. The good news though is that a single Philips screw driver can be used to remove every screw in the device (FWIW) and that many of the components are still modular meaning they can be replaced independently.
In the end neither of the two Galaxy S10 devices were easily repairable but then very few phones these days are. I for one do not consider the repair-ability of a phone before deciding on a purchase, I prefer to think positively instead and focus on not breaking it.