Some of the scariest repairs are easier than you’d think. To help build your courage, we’ve collected some simple tips for handling the scariest small electronics repairs around. Just like creepy basements, frightening repairs are a lot less scary in the light.
The Nexus 6P is the first Huawei-produced Google phone: the industrial design contains hallmarks of established brands, and almost approaches Apple-level luxury. While the internal components are not as sleek and slim, they aren’t a haphazard mess either. Unfortunately, Huawei’s over-engineering makes the phone a tough nut to crack; the bear of an opening procedure puts the 6P on our personal nopelist.
This morning, Copyright Office decided which of your own devices are legal to investigate, modify, and hack—bringing a close to our year-long saga of legal gunslinging, negotiation, fact finding, hearings, and deliberation over US copyright law. Along with a coalition of activists, recyclers, and legal clinics, were able to overcome the objections of manufacturers and secure exemptions for repairing tractors, cars, and tablets.
October is almost Octover. To ease your sorrow of fall’s swift passing, we bring you good news from our Surface Pro 4 teardown—slightly less obnoxious adhesive. We’d like to think that we had something to do with Microsoft’s move toward openability (we’ve been critical of the Surfaces-of-yore), but really it just makes sense—even without our goading. With configurations costing up to $2600, this shouldn’t be a throwaway device.
Dave Hakkens, creator of Phonebloks, went to the most infamous landfill and scrap site in the world: Agbogbloshie, which is repeatedly labeled as ground-zero for e-waste by press. The reality on the ground is more complex. Agbogbloshie isn’t just a burning e-wasteland—it’s a community of about 40,000 people. There are schools, homes, community centers, an onion market, scrappers, repair shops, and markets for used goods. So while Hakkens went to investigate e-waste, he found so much more.
All Hallow’s Eve is just around the corner and things have been a lil’ spooky around here. A few days ago, we tore down Apple’s refreshed 21.5″ iMac. It looks scary-similar to the new Retina 4K. So similar, in fact, that lots of people thought that it was the Retina 4K. But fear not, no doppelgängers here; today we’re dismembering the good-looking twin—the iMac 21.5″ Retina 4K.
Apple released a slew of magical Maccessories just in time for the witching season—Magic Keyboard, Magic Trackpad 2, and Magic Mouse 2. It’s clear that Apple took a unified approach to engineering when designing all three of these devices. We discovered a lot of design commonalities running through this triple threat: same chips, similar batteries, pairing and charging over Lightning.
‘Tis the season of the teardown and we just got our mitts on Apple’s refreshed 21.5” iMac. This 1080p model may be just enough to whet your appetite before the Retina 4K teardown, but we’re hoping the refresh is more than just a new EMC number. Inside the familiar slim chassis we found only minor modifications to better secure the antenna cables, and of course some new chips. The hardware is pretty much unchanged and suffers a 1 out of 10 on the repairability scale.
No fixer is an island. So why not meet up and repair together—with a little “professional” guidance? That’s the idea behind the “Repair Café” movement. In those “cafés,” owners of broken devices get the help they need to fix their devices from experienced repairers. What began as the idea of Dutch journalist and blogger Martine Postma in 2009 has led to the establishment of more than 800 Repair Cafés around the world today.
The streaming device war rages on. It’s been 2 years since Google cast its name into the ring, offering up their original streaming device—the Chromecast. Now, they’ve updated the second generation of their dainty dongle—the Chromecast 2015—with a new shape and pretty plastic colors. But wait, there’s more! Google introduced a new audio-only counterpart to their device-streaming family, the Chromecast Audio. You know what that means? Double the teardown, double the fun!
On Friday, we tore down Apple’s two newest iPhones and found something new lurking (quite literally) just below the surface. When we opened up the 6s, we discovered some mystery adhesive around a display that’s already secured with screws. Weird. It’s not as if past iPhone displays were in danger of falling out of the phone. So if the iPhone display didn’t need adhesive, what was Apple up to? We had our suspicions. Maybe—just maybe—it was designed to keep liquids out.