Galaxy Z Fold 2 teardown shows improved design, better repairability

JC Torres - Sep 20, 2020, 8:39pm CDT
Galaxy Z Fold 2 teardown shows improved design, better repairability

The price that consumers have to pay for novel and futuristic devices like foldable phones goes beyond the literal price tag. The longevity of these devices, given their youth, also needs to be factored into the decision-making process. It was really no surprise that the Galaxy Fold would fail almost spectacularly in its durability and repairability but Samsung has now had more than a year to get things right or at least better this time. Fortunately for the Galaxy Z Fold 2, that does seem to be the case but iFixit still has some reservations about it.

That the external cover display and back glass would come off almost easily was too good to be true and, in fact, was. With just the right amount of heat and not so much prying, the outward-facing surface of the Samsung’s third foldable detaches without further resistance. Unfortunately, it reveals an overdose of screws to test your patience.

The modular components of the Galaxy Z Fold 2 do make life a bit easier if you do get to those parts. Having fewer cameras also helps reduce anxiety when opening up the phone. Unfortunately, batteries will be batteries and Samsung will be Samsung so removing the two battery packs, now thankfully larger than the first model, is still a difficult and dangerous chore.

Of note, however, are the new mechanisms Samsung introduced to improve the foldable phone’s durability. The hinge system has been reworked to have fewer parts but actually offers more angles while the bezel around the foldable screen has become more integrated into the design. That foldable screen also uses foldable glass now instead of plastic, making it less fragile than before.

Despite those improvements, the Galaxy Z Fold 2 barely climbs higher on the repairability index compared to its predecessor. With a score of 3 out of 10, it’s just a point higher than both the first Galaxy Fold as well as the Microsoft Surface Duo. It’s hardly the most repairable phone out there but, given what you’re paying for, every improvement towards the device’s longevity counts.

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