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Introduction

In the age of Galaxy smartphones and Galaxy tablets, Samsung adds a Galaxy Watch to its mobile Universe. There was already some gear floating in space, forming a belt around the Samsung sun, but a few months ago, this new celestial body has emerged. Today we’ll go where no tinkerer has gone before, and probe the depths of this timepiece with a teardown. Everyone, ahead full, sensors ready—and set weapons to Dismantle.

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This teardown is not a repair guide. To repair your Samsung Galaxy Watch, use our service manual.

  1. Our initial telemetry of the Galaxy Watch brings up:
    • Our initial telemetry of the Galaxy Watch brings up:

    • 1.3” (33 mm) circular Super AMOLED with 360 × 360 display (1.2" / 30 mm on the smaller 42 mm version)

    • Dual-core, 1.15 GHz Exynos 9110 processor

    • 1.5 GB RAM + 4 GB internal memory (768 MB RAM for the Bluetooth version)

    • Wireless charging and 5 ATM water resistance with IP68 rating

    • 472 mAh battery (270 mAh for the 42 mm version)

  2. A quick orbital survey reveals twin mechanical buttons on one side of the watch, with a small wormhole for the microphone. On the far side, we spot three more holes for the loudspeaker. There's also a heart rate sensor cluster at the bottom.
    • A quick orbital survey reveals twin mechanical buttons on one side of the watch, with a small wormhole for the microphone.

    • On the far side, we spot three more holes for the loudspeaker. There's also a heart rate sensor cluster at the bottom.

    • There seems to be an additional small opening on the rear face, possibly for a proximity sensor or pressure valve.

  3. This Galaxy’s official designation is SM-R805F. The standardized 22 mm arms of this galaxy are rather easy to detach from the center … … and reveal access to a five-pin port at the lower end of the centerpiece.
    • This Galaxy’s official designation is SM-R805F.

    • The standardized 22 mm arms of this galaxy are rather easy to detach from the center …

    • … and reveal access to a five-pin port at the lower end of the centerpiece.

    • Is that a USB+1 for emergency wired charging and service?

    • Equipped with our aluminum Precision Bit Driver with swivel cap, we tackle the vortex-shaped tri-point screws.

    • These screws seem to be attracted by three magnetic fields that handle docking to the wireless charging stand.

    • But we are not distracted by that common fundamental interaction and crack open the watch core with a little stronger force.

    • The Galaxy Watch is rated IP68 and therefore offers some resistance—but we know this is futile.

  4. Expecting a booby trap, we're surprised by the generously long ribbon cable connecting the heart rate sensor back to the internals. The blue rubber seal around the Galaxy's edge might need replacing before reassembly if damaged, but there's no glue so far—we like that. Speaking of sealing: We also spot rubber gaskets for the microphone, ambient light sensor, and pressure sensor.
    • Expecting a booby trap, we're surprised by the generously long ribbon cable connecting the heart rate sensor back to the internals.

    • The blue rubber seal around the Galaxy's edge might need replacing before reassembly if damaged, but there's no glue so far—we like that.

    • Speaking of sealing: We also spot rubber gaskets for the microphone, ambient light sensor, and pressure sensor.

  5. After disconnecting the display, this nucleus separates nicely into a few smaller elements. Encouragingly, there is still no sign of that fifth fundamental force: glue. The display’s flex cable carpet carries the ambient light sensor, which peeps through a small hole in the display to gaze at the outside world. Ripping the cable carpet away like we did will most likely damage the display. If you plan on exploring your own Galaxy, be warned, and keep an eye out for our official guides.
    • After disconnecting the display, this nucleus separates nicely into a few smaller elements. Encouragingly, there is still no sign of that fifth fundamental force: glue.

    • The display’s flex cable carpet carries the ambient light sensor, which peeps through a small hole in the display to gaze at the outside world.

    • Ripping the cable carpet away like we did will most likely damage the display. If you plan on exploring your own Galaxy, be warned, and keep an eye out for our official guides.

  6. Although the display is circular, it is not spherical—which seems to support the controversial "flat display theory." With foldable displays coming in the near future though, this theory may soon be disproved for good. The Super AMOLED display on our 46 mm version has a diameter of 1.3" (33 mm). The vertical and horizontal max resolution is 360 pixels. We spot a chip with the markings S88YA1YF1X01
    • Although the display is circular, it is not spherical—which seems to support the controversial "flat display theory." With foldable displays coming in the near future though, this theory may soon be disproved for good.

    • The Super AMOLED display on our 46 mm version has a diameter of 1.3" (33 mm). The vertical and horizontal max resolution is 360 pixels.

    • We spot a chip with the markings S88YA1YF1X01

    • ... and the ambient light sensor with its peep hole.

  7. The gravitational computational center of the galaxy looks like a little flat bug’s head, with its two button cables as antennae. There's not much else to show on this side, save for two flat monolith-ish blocks of resin—similar to the one in the Apple Watch Series 4. There's not much else to show on this side, save for two flat monolith-ish blocks of resin—similar to the one in the Apple Watch Series 4.
    • The gravitational computational center of the galaxy looks like a little flat bug’s head, with its two button cables as antennae.

    • There's not much else to show on this side, save for two flat monolith-ish blocks of resin—similar to the one in the Apple Watch Series 4.

  8. The other side though has a bit more to offer: Samsung Exynos 9110 SoC (dual-core, 1.15 GHz) NXP 80T17 NFC controller
    • The other side though has a bit more to offer:

    • Samsung Exynos 9110 SoC (dual-core, 1.15 GHz)

    • NXP 80T17 NFC controller

    • Broadcom BCM430131 WiFi/BT chip and BCM47758-GPS/GLONASS chip

    • Skyworks 77651-21 and 77652-11 multimode/multiband power amplifier modules for 3G/LTE

    • S910 NFY55 WR1

    • STMicroelectronics barometric pressure sensor

    • ST Micro ST33G1M2 32-bit ARM® SecurCore® SC300 (secure element)

  9. Structural integrity is provided by a midframe, which also houses the power source that makes this galaxy spin. With the push of a finger, we can pop out the 3.85 V battery with its 472 mAh offering 1.81 Wh. That means this Galaxy surpasses the 1.47 Wh  of the Gear S3 (380 mAh @ 3.85 V) and the 1.113 Wh of the Apple Watch Series 4 (291.8 mAh @ 3.81 V).
    • Structural integrity is provided by a midframe, which also houses the power source that makes this galaxy spin.

    • With the push of a finger, we can pop out the 3.85 V battery with its 472 mAh offering 1.81 Wh.

    • That means this Galaxy surpasses the 1.47 Wh of the Gear S3 (380 mAh @ 3.85 V) and the 1.113 Wh of the Apple Watch Series 4 (291.8 mAh @ 3.81 V).

    • We return to the back cover in search of satellite components. Equipped with a halberd spudger, we probe the heart rate sensor and the NFC antenna.

    • The four photo cells of the heart rate sensor are gathered around the light source in the middle.

    • On board is a single Texas Instruments TI 8AWKJYP SN1712025 ultra-small, integrated AFE (analog front end) heart rate sensor chip

  10. The last parts to come out of the back cover are the service port and the loudspeaker, held fast by two Phillips screws, with a rubber gasket for ingress protection. From the midframe, we extract an ordinary vibration motor and a hall sensor array, which we set aside to investigate later with the rotating bezel. From the midframe, we extract an ordinary vibration motor and a hall sensor array, which we set aside to investigate later with the rotating bezel.
    • The last parts to come out of the back cover are the service port and the loudspeaker, held fast by two Phillips screws, with a rubber gasket for ingress protection.

    • From the midframe, we extract an ordinary vibration motor and a hall sensor array, which we set aside to investigate later with the rotating bezel.

    • This galaxy has its own outer ring, and we are eager to lift it free. An opening pick helps us push the ring out of its orbit.

    • What comes to light is a separate plastic ring and four metal ball bearings.

    • Each of the bearings sits on a spring recessed in the aluminum casing, generating a snappy lock when the bezel is turned and the bearing constellation aligns with the grooves in the bezel.

  11. To read the turning of the bezel, the Galaxy Watch uses a different approach than the optical encoder of the Apple Watch. There are three hall sensors on the small PCB, at the same distance from each other as the grooves on the bezel. And every third groove has a small magnet inside.
    • To read the turning of the bezel, the Galaxy Watch uses a different approach than the optical encoder of the Apple Watch.

    • There are three hall sensors on the small PCB, at the same distance from each other as the grooves on the bezel.

    • And every third groove has a small magnet inside.

    • When the bezel is turned, two of the three sensors read a change in their magnetic field (either on/off or off/on). The third sensor does not read a change. With this method, it can be clearly determined in which direction the bezel is rotated.

  12. What happens when this man-made galaxy stops spinning? It gets recharged of course. And its charger shall not remain a mystery. Again we grab our precision bit driver, and go for a spin ourselves. And its charger shall not remain a mystery. Again we grab our precision bit driver, and go for a spin ourselves.
    • What happens when this man-made galaxy stops spinning? It gets recharged of course.

    • And its charger shall not remain a mystery. Again we grab our precision bit driver, and go for a spin ourselves.

    • This one won't give away its secrets that easily, so we have to bring out our thermally-enhanced particle accelerator (also known as an ordinary heat gun).

    • Eventually we succeed with strong (hand) force and the use of a pair of flat needle nose pliers ...

    • ... which lays bare the charging coil with its ~14 windings (front and back).

  13. A small warship PCB lifts off from the charger, and it's carrying some new silicon: IDT P923 5A-16NDGI wireless power transmitter with a 32 bit ARM® Cortex®-M0 processor Micro USB for power supply
    • A small warship PCB lifts off from the charger, and it's carrying some new silicon:

    • IDT P923 5A-16NDGI wireless power transmitter with a 32 bit ARM® Cortex®-M0 processor

    • Micro USB for power supply

    • Not four, not five, but one LED light on the tail.

    • This charger's layout could be similar to the Gear S3 charging dock, which provides 700 mA of output current at 5 V.

  14. All the pieces of this Galaxy are now spread across the sky table.
    • All the pieces of this Galaxy are now spread across the sky table.

    • Our galactic journey ends here. The space-time continuum remains stable and we filled our explorational void with a little knowledge and insight.

    • So stay tuned for future teardowns, and remain curious.

  15. Final Thoughts
    • Display repair is prioritized.
    • No overlapping design of cables, no fragile ZIF connectors.
    • Despite the water-resistant construction, the opening procedure is straightforward and glueless (though it requires an uncommon tri-point driver).
    • The battery only uses mild adhesive, but the motherboard must be removed for access.
    • A lot of components are modular and can be replaced separately—except for the frequently-used twin button cables, which are soldered to the motherboard.
    • The glass digitizer and screen are fused together—meaning a full replacement will be quick and easy, but glass-only repairs will be impractical.
    Repairability Score
    7
    Repairability 7 out of 10
    (10 is easiest to repair)

6 Comments

Hi,

How about the removal of the bezel for cleaning? Is it easy? It is like the gear s3?

Thanks.

Jacouille - Reply

Is there anyway for me to order the spring and barring that goes under the bezel?

kristin_marie86 - Reply

In step 12, 3rd pic, there is a speaker..can i get the information of where to get that speaker part??

Monika Verma - Reply

Same question as posted earlier around sourcing the bezel bearings, springs and gasket. Any thoughts?

Richard Davis - Reply

My bazel ring got scratched.from where can i get a new bazel ring?

Khurshid Rasheed - Reply

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