Samsung is often praised for its build quality (well, since the S6 anyway), and they go to great lengths to accomplish a solid construction chock-full of hardware features. As much as we dislike the resulting UX brought by software mishaps, we readily admit Samsung’s hardware is as good as it gets. A new set of teardowns by iFixit shows us precisely why that is, and how everything is put together in an impressive, dense little package. Here are some of the juicier details:
The glass construction makes repairing the Galaxy S8 and S8+ quite complicated, as you’ll need a heat gun to soften-up the glue holding the glass sandwich together, and then pry it open with pick trickery. The glue needs to be replaced with reassembly, too, if you want to ensure your device won’t fall apart once you are done fixing it. Luckily, once inside, there is a decent degree of modularity, with elements like the fingerprint scanner and camera module being easy-enough to remove and/or replace. If you can get past the crackability of the glass panels, you shouldn’t have a hard time fixing the device’s guts, though that’s a big if, and replacing the front glass without disrupting or breaking the display panel is likely impossible. Also, the battery is glued tightly, and while it is replaceable, it’s harder (and perhaps even more dangerous) than it should be given Samsung’s previous battery hazards.
The internal setup of both the S8 and S8+ is “pretty darn identical”, according to iFixit. We also get to see how the motherboard is put together (and how the I/O hub is hard to reach). Luckily, taking a look at the battery also gives us precise power capacity specs for the devices: the Galaxy S8 clocks in at 11.55Wh (slightly higher than the Pixel’s 10.66Wh) and the Galaxy S8+ comes with 13.48Wh, or 3,500mAh at 3.85V, like the defunct Note 7. The phone’s midframe is a smart piece of engineering, with a double-duty array consisting of the speaker and antennae array / NFC coil assembly, and the NFC coil itself presumably spoofs MST as well for Samsung Pay functionality. Finally, we see Samsung’s choice of Toshiba for the UFS NAND Flash + Controller.
For a more detailed and structured look at the teardowns, be sure to visit iFixit by following the links below. We really appreciate their work as they teach power users and enthusiasts all over the globe to fully own their devices, and we all learn more about our favorite hardware in the process.
All images from iFixit