Motorola Razr teardown reveals the hinge’s secrets

JC Torres - Feb 27, 2020, 5:29 am CST
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Motorola Razr teardown reveals the hinge’s secrets

If you haven’t had your fill of fold tests and teardowns of this year’s most expensive and most fragile phones, YouTube channel JerryRigEverything is only too happy to oblige. The channel’s Zack Nelson already broke the Motorola Razr during his torture test so there’s nothing left to be done but to open it all up. We’ve already seen iFixit’s verdict on the phone’s dismal repairability but now we’re getting to see the minuscule piece that truly sets the phone apart.

At this point, only Samsung and Motorola are competing in the foldable clamshell market and their two phones couldn’t be more different both outside and inside. The Galaxy Z Flip is Samsung’s second foldable phone and the organization of components inside hints at its experience. In contrast, the Motorola Razr’s guts are a sordid mess but it isn’t a haphazard mess.

Nelson argues that while the disorganization does make it harder to tear down and repair as iFixit concluded, it may have been a necessary evil to shield the components from everyday wear and tear. Connectors are hidden underneath circuit boards to prevent them from getting disconnected and sticky goo, not glue, keeps dust and moisture away.

The biggest surprise, however, is the hinge itself, which is actually just a tiny clip that holds the two halves of the Motorola Razr together. The contrast between the complicated, alien-looking hinge that Samsung developed for the Galaxy Z Flip is so stark that it boggles the mind how Motorola was able to pull it off at all.

So while the Motorola Razr’s organization seems to be severely lacking, its mechanisms, both the hinge and dust-proofing, are too simple to be messy at all. It does, however, raise questions about the phone’s durability or the price Motorola is asking not only for less powerful hardware but also for simpler components.


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