Apple's iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus are out today and cosmetically, not much has changed aside from the new glass back. It's a seemingly insignificant substitution but one that could have a major impact on your ability to repair the phone should the need arise.
The teardown experts at iFixit hopped a plane to Australia (time zones and all) to be among the first to get their mitts on Apple's latest iPhone.
Diving right in, the team removed the requisite pentalobe screws, applied heat to soften the waterproof display seals then used a suction cup tool to get inside.
While you'll encounter a few new connectors and brackets along the way, not a whole lot has changed on the inside. The iPhone 8 uses the same f/1.8 aperture lens as before but virtually everything else about the camera is new and improved. As expected, the battery inside the iPhone 8 is indeed smaller than last year's model at 1,821mAh (3.82V, 6.96 Wh).
Separating the rear glass from the chassis, however, proved a bit difficult as the team accidentally bent the reinforcement plate out of shape. Apple has probably perfected the process but of course, they aren't talking.
All things considered, the iPhone 8 earned a repairability score of six out of 10 (the higher the number, the easier it is to repair).
As before, the two most commonly replaced components - the display and battery - are relatively straightforward to get to with the proper tools and knowledge. The addition of wireless charging is also a good thing as it'll mean less wear and tear on the Lightning port, a common point of failure.
Apple claims the rear glass panel is durable but we'll have to see how it holds up in torture tests and in the real world over time. Either way, replacing it won't be easy.
All images courtesy iFixit