DIY enthusiasts, it’s time to take a long, hard look under the hood of Samsung’s hot new Galaxy Note 8 and… acknowledge its great complexity.
The world’s number one smartphone manufacturer unfortunately turned a deaf ear to pleas from hardcore brand fans of a removable battery comeback. In fact, the Note 8 is exactly as tricky to repair at home as the ill-fated Note 7, revived Note FE and ultra-successful Galaxy S8+.
iFixit gives it a 4 out of 10 repairability score, stressing that a very challenging glass rear panel removal process will stand in the way of any maintenance work you might think of trying.
That swanky new 6.3-inch Super AMOLED “Infinity” display is also quite fragile and secured with strong adhesive, making its replacement largely a game of chance. Meanwhile, the battery is swappable if you’re determined enough, but you’re only advised to go for a substitute in the case of catastrophic damage not covered by a standard warranty.
On the bright side, many components that typically “experience wear” are essentially modular, requiring little effort to be “replaced independently.” Once you pry open the rear cover, that is, which can be extremely time-consuming and nerve-racking.
In terms of parts used to put together probably the best phone in the world right now, you shouldn’t be surprised to hear they come from a small group of tried-and-true suppliers. You have your Qualcomm chips, your essential Samsung-made components, as well as various Skyworks, Avago, Wacom and Murata goods.
The battery inside this particular unit is Samsung SDI’s baby, packing less punch than the Note 7’s ticker while interestingly moving to an uncharacteristic position. “Nearly dead-center”, that is, which will hopefully keep the phone safe and cucumber cool.