Galaxy S6 Teardown: Let’s All Play a Dirge for Repair

The Samsung Galaxy S6 is clearly the next-gen evolution of the S5—streamlined and more in-keeping with the current smartphone trends. Samsung is learning from its mistakes… just not in the way we want them to. The S6 abandoned the display-first entry of the S5 and instead features a stubbornly-glued back panel in the place of an easily-accessed battery. And you still run the risk of shearing soft button cables during a display replacement. Gone, it seems, are the heady days of Samsung’s über-repairable phones. *Cue trumpet playing taps softly*

On our repairability scale, the S6 scored one point higher than the Edge—but with a 4/10, it still pretty much tanked our teardown.

Samsung Galaxy 6 repairability score after the teardownTeardown Highlights:

• Removing the midframe reveals… an S6 Edge? Maybe not—but it takes a keen eye to spot the difference. Apart from a slight rejiggering of the vibrator placement, these internals are a dead ringer for that other flagship Samsung smartphone we tore down recently.

• Replacing the battery in the S6 will be a little bit easier than the Edge. In the Edge, the battery cable was routed under the motherboard before connecting on top, necessitating removing the motherboard to get to the battery.

• An odd cable design gets in the way of easily replacing the USB port—you have to remove the display first.

A Whole Galaxy of Chips:

• Samsung Exynos 7420 Octa-core Processor – 64-bit, 2.1 GHz Quad + 1.5 GHz Quad
• Samsung KLUBG4G1BD 32GB NAND Flash
• Skyworks 78041 Hybrid Multimode Multiband (MMMB) Front-End Module (FEM)
• Avago AFEM-9020 PAM
• Broadcom BCM4773 GNSS Location Hub
• Samsung C2N8AF (possibly image processor)
• Avago A7007
• Wolfson Microelectronics WM1840 Audio Codec
• Samsung S2MPS15
• Samsung Shannon 928 RF Transceiver
• Maxim MAX77843 Companion PMIC
• Maxim MAX98505 Class DG Audio Amplifier
• Samsung Shannon 600B5D
• STMicro FT6BH touchscreen controller