Teardown specialist iFixit had their hands full on Friday as Motorola's latest smartphone - the Moto X - finally hit retail. First impressions were generally good as the team found the device to be slightly smaller than the Galaxy S 4 and they were impressed with the contoured back shell although a defect next to the SIM card tray is hopefully an isolated incident.
Getting inside the Moto X proved a bit difficult as Motorola not only clipped the rear shell in place, they also used a bit of adhesive. Multiple steps (and tools) later, the team finally breached the interior only to find Motorola's X8 Mobile Computing System front and center. The brains of the phone, this bundle includes a Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 Pro processor, a natural language processor and a contextual computing processor.
Elsewhere is a 2,200mAh lithium ion battery, a 2-megapixel front-facing camera, a 10-megaxpiel rear shooter, Toshiba THGBMAG7A2JBAIR 16 GB eMMC NAND flash, SK Hynix H9TKNNNBPDAR RAM, an NXP 44701 NFC chip and other various chips and components.
If nothing else, iFixit described the design choices as unique and in conclusion, it earned a repairability score of seven out of 10 (10 being the easiest to repair). The use of pressure contacts and cable connectors make the modular components easy to replace while a single type of screw (albeit a fairly uncommon size) will limit the number of screwdrivers you need.
Shortcomings include a taped-in battery that was less accessible than they liked and a digitizer that is fused to the display which increases repair costs for a cracked screen. The display midframe can be separated, however, potentially lowering the cost of the replacement part.