Pixel 3 XL iFixit Teardown Confirms Samsung Display And Lots Of Glue

The Pixel 3 and the Pixel 3 XL are nearly upon us, but before they land, iFixit has gotten its hands on the Pixel 3 XL to give us an idea of how easy it'll be to repair. Of course, we don't expect an effort-free teardown and repair process for any flagship phones these days, but still, some phones score better than others when it comes to iFixit's ratings. Is the Pixel 3 XL one of them?

Unfortunately, the answer to that question seems to be "no." Right away, the Pixel 3 XL loses repairability points for having both a glass front and back. While glass-covered flagships seem to be very popular at the moment, the fact of the matter is that glass is more fragile than aluminum, increasing the potential for damage and the possible need for repairs.

Getting into the phone doesn't seem to be a very easy process either. iFixit notes that even though the Pixel 3 XL uses foam adhesive like the Pixel 2 XL did, heat still needs to be applied to the device if you want to lift the display. It sounds like removing the display might be a problem area for the Pixel 3 XL, but the good news is that once you get in, performing a common repair should be fairly easy.

We're talking, of course, about battery removal. iFixit's teardown shows that the battery is held in place with stretch-release adhesive, so if you need to replace the battery, that should be an easy task to handle assuming you can get the display off without cracking it. Other repairs, however, might not be so easy, as you'll need to remove the speaker housing at the bottom of the phone and break its waterproof seal if you want to replace anything on the daughterboard, such as the USB-C port or the SIM reader.

An up-close of the motherboard gives us a look at a lot of Qualcomm hardware (like the Snapdragon 845 that runs the show) alongside the Google SR3HX Pixel Visual Core and Google's Titan M security chip. iFixit also discovered that the display in the Pixel 3 XL is one of Samsung's AMOLED panels, and while that's good news for those who love a quality display, it should also be noted that display replacement will probably require replacing the frame as well.

In the end, the Pixel 3 XL nets a repariability score of 4 out of 10 – the same as the Galaxy S9 and the Galaxy Note 9 from earlier this year, and somewhat lower than the 6 out of 10 the iPhone XS took home. iFixit likes the fact that only T3 Torx screws are used in securing components, but doesn't like that fixing any of those components will require the removal of the phone's back panel. Be sure to read through iFixit's full teardown, as it gives us a particularly fascinating look at the Pixel 3 XL.