These 10 Electronic Devices Are Nearly Impossible to Repair

By on September 23, 2013, 2:28 AM

It's becoming tradition that with every new high-profile gadget release, we showcase whatever findings the repair commandos at share with us, whether it's the latest iPhone 5S and 5C, the Nvidia Shield, Moto X smartphone, or the yet unfinalized Oculus Rift VR headset.

In a follow-up article we'll list devices and gadgets you can service on your own. But if it's controversy and indignation you want, this is the week you've been waiting for! Here are iFixit's top 10 hardest-to-repair electronics.

Read the complete article.

User Comments: 18

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Guest said:

So Apple products are unserviceable? Good to know.

1 person liked this | Guest said:

No doubt Apple tops the list and clogs most of the rankings. They expect you to replace and buy their products every 2 years if not 1.

Guest said:

iFixit Verdict: "The Surface Pro's display assembly is incredibly hard to remove, sealed in place with tons of adhesive. Once you have the cover removed, there are more than 90 screws inside to keep you from the rest of the components."

Fixability Score: 1

Why fix a device which is not broken?. Anyway, if MS ads are to be believed, a Surface tablet can withstand the rigors of wear-and-tear, skateboarding, run-over by car. however, it has not yet recovered by being run-over by iPad and Android tablets.:D

bexwhitt said:

I have an HTC one and it's a lovely phone but the unfixability of it is just stupid.

p51d007 said:

Well, gotta give it to Apple...they know that if they build it to the point it takes a hacksaw, chisel, stick of dynamite to get it apart, it's less likely to "wiggle apart" with constant use. On the flip side, it makes it to the point that if it is dropped, you have to replace it.

I have a Samsung Gnote, which I disassembled to replace the USB connector which I damaged. After watching a 5 minute video on youtube, it took about 10 minutes to replace it. 10-12 screws, couple connectors and done.

cmbjive said:

Moral of the story: Apple fans spend a lot of money and Apple knows it.

sasrob said:

No wonder why apple sells so much. The one thing I would like to know is how do apple repair there own stuff?? glue/adhesive would mean apple have to destroy there own products to repair them? I stay well clear of all apple stuff. I like to upgrade/repair my stuff.

JC713 JC713 said:

Well, I wouldnt blame apple for the lack of fixability on the MBs and maybe even the iPads. In order to get those devices so thin, you have to compress stuff in as much as possible. Gluing the battery wasnt necessary IMO but it may have been needed to make it thinner. Who knows.

dennis777 dennis777 said:

I like to see the top 10 most durable devices, apple might be their also..

Im still using an old Ipod classic 30gb with damage screen but still working.. im not a fan but apple quality is one of the best.

St1ckM4n St1ckM4n said:

I like to see the top 10 most durable devices, apple might be their also..

Without Gorilla Glass (prior to 5)? And prone to users throwing them on the ground on a yearly basis as an excuse to upgrade? Either way, there's a reason we have seen so many smashed iPhone screens.

Adhmuz Adhmuz, TechSpot Paladin, said:

"If nothing else, the presence of six Apple items here, we would hope, should serve as a wake up call to Apple CEO, Tim Cook: Make your products more repairable, and thus less likely to wind up in landfills."

Or maybe this is their plan the whole time, make something impossible to repair forcing your customers to buy a new one. Also theres the fact that getting any apple product repaired by apple is going to cost 50-75% of the original purchase making it hard to not buy a new device. On the glue note it can be done for one of a couple reasons; it will make the phone slightly heavier and a lot more solid, good for feel in hand but when you drop it the energy of impact has no place to go but right into the glass, possibly resulting in more broken screens. The other reason I can see is manufacturing, they just glob it on and seal it up and thats a good days work, ones that don't pass QC end up as unbranded phones for sale in china. Either way you look at it, the end product is just going to end up in a landfill, weather in 1 year or 2 years, the planet will suffer about the same in the long run.

wiyosaya said:

Tim Cook take notice? I'd like to know what you are taking to alter your perception of reality.

This is how crApple makes their money. Hook people with a product that is so proprietary you even need a special screwdriver to take it apart, then when it breaks, sell the customer a new one.

And iSheep gladly step in line because crApple's marketing makes everyone think that you are less than a person if you do not own crApple.

Tygerstrike said:

Can you imagine what either future generations or our alien overlords would think if they found a stash of Apple in a landfill? Say 3000 years in the future, if Apple products survived that long.

bexwhitt said:

I like to see the top 10 most durable devices, apple might be their also..

Im still using an old Ipod classic 30gb with damage screen but still working.. im not a fan but apple quality is one of the best.

The Iphone 4/4s with the glass back was an accident waiting to happen,

Most LCDs with a glass front will still work if the glass is broken

hahahanoobs hahahanoobs said:

The HTC One surprised me.

My boy at work sent his in because his power button wasn't working and he could only hear people if he was on speakerphone. For a loaner phone, he was given some LG phone from Rogers running Gingerbread. Man what a crappy loaner.

inverse137 inverse137 said:

So Apple products are unserviceable? Good to know.

Most tablets/phones are unserviceable.

I mean, sure, I can rip an iPhone, android, or whatever apart and replace the screen, but by the time I factor in all of the labor cost it is basically a toss up to pay the repair cost or buy a new one.

YOU have an agenda. That is annoying.

I will say that Mac Book displays are extremely difficult to replace compared to other laptops. I can replace a Dell or HP screen in about 20 minutes. A Mac Book Will take me an hour or more likely 2 hours to replace.

nismo91 said:

I think the title 'repair' is not exactly accurate. it's pretty well known that most phone or laptop is not generally serviceable. even if the device can be easily dismantled, often spareparts cost more than the device's worth.

a friend accidentally dropped her macbookpro onto the floor and ruined the display chassis. couldn't even find someone who sells only the chassis (screen lid) without the screen itself. obviously the cost of the screen with the lid is extremely high considering it is an apple product. so when a sparepart is not available, isn't it also nearly impossible to repair?

hence I think the title of this article should be: top 10 devices that are blacklisted by repairmen. or top 10 devices that are not worth sending for repair.

P.S. I managed to sell the macbook to a guy who 'repairs' laptop. he told me he needed the motherboard. goodluck to him, there's probably more macbook with broken display rather than broken screen lid chassis in his place.

Guest said:

I hate those cable connectors that have a clamp to hold end in place . the clamp is far too easily broken or lost while the terminal is soldered into board complicating replacement.... I recently tried to repair a compaq laptop after the owner was in there & was unable to fix the cable attachment that he broke.. Doc Ramski Seymour TX

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