This Android-powered Ouya console is the first of its kind. It’s specifically designed to be open to professional and amateur game designers alike, with free software development tools included with every console. Sounds like it’s right up our alley.
Full disclosure: The folks at Ouya tout this to be “the first totally open video game console.” They have so much confidence in the Ouya, in fact, that they sent us a retail unit to take apart. Game on, folks.
The small cube (and its controller) came apart with little difficulty. Those with long-haired pets will appreciate that it takes about five minutes to pop open and clean out the heatsink and fan. As a result of its disassembility, the Ouya scored a stellar 9 out of 10 on the repairability scale. Read the rest of this article »
When is the last time you saw a teardown of a Zenith CH 650 aircraft? Unfortunately, the iFixit teardown room isn’t large enough to accommodate a small plane (yet…), but that’s where Todd McLellan’s book Things Come Apart: A Teardown Manual For Modern Living comes in handy.
Don’t be fooled by the title—the book isn’t a step-by-step manual on how to disassemble objects. Instead, it’s literally an inside look at what McLellan calls “fifty design classics,” ranging from the everyday (mechanical pencil) to the forgotten (push lawnmower).
McLellan painstakingly photographs an orderly mess of internal components—each piece arranged and displayed like some new form of object archeology. Add five essays on repair and disassembly from various voices in the repair world, and you have a book that finds a unique way to advocate for the importance of disassembly, investigation, and reuse. Read the rest of this article »
We do our best to get new hardware the moment it hits the market, and trying to figure out where to get the S4 this week has been a headache — to say the least. We’ve never seen this many flip-flopping announcements (outside of the US Senate, of course).
But good news! The Galaxy S4 is here… and we’re glad the wait is finally over.
The reports are true. Samsung didn’t go to great lengths to reinvent the wheel with regard to the S4’s internal construction. The design is very similar, if not identical, to the Galaxy S III — which is a good thing, since the S III is a pretty fixable device. The Galaxy S4 receives an interstellar 8 out of 10 repairability score for its replaceable battery and straightforward disassembly.
It’s no secret that at iFixit we’re pretty excited about Apple-related news. So when a pair of Apple’s top iPod engineers left the company to follow their product development dreams, our interest was slightly piqued. When they released a refined, second-generation Nest thermostat, we couldn’t resist—it had to be torn down.
Opening the Nest revealed a clutch of pleasant surprises. First moment of joy: the thermostat is held together with Phillips screws, handily removed with the included driver. Next, the rechargeable battery is easy to access and replace, with convenient directions printed inside the device. The icing on the cake: all of this great design is nested in a tough steel case, making for a long-lasting product that’s both repairable and durable. With these considerations in mind, we happily assigned the Nest Learning Thermostat a 9 out of 10 on our repairability scale. Read the rest of this article »
This is the future of Starbucks coffee tables across the country. (Cue the 2001: A Space Odyssey music.)
We had the majority of the iFixit team try the Oculus Rift, and pretty much all of us were queasy after about 10 minutes of playing Team Fortress 2 in VR mode. But now that we have a taste of it, we can barely wait until this technology is perfected. The Rift is an experience we’ve never seen before—even the non-gamers among us were amazed.
The good news doesn’t stop there. The Rift—at least in Developer Kit form—scores an excellent 9 out of 10 on our repairability scale. It uses standard screws, has pretty much no adhesive, and the whole thing comes apart in under ten minutes. However, our Rift is essentially a beta product, so we’re not sure how much it will differ from the final, consumer version. We’ll put the final version under the knife in due time, but so far so good! Read the rest of this article »
Monday morning. The iFixit teardown room is tense and silent. The scent of citrus hangs in the air. And the Orange is preparing to meet its fate—an iFixit teardown to determine its repairability.
Despite the fact that Andrew and Sam are preparing for their most difficult and controversial teardown yet, they seem ready. Andrew will tackle the physical teardown of the fruit; he’s clearly prepared to meet the challenge with zest. He places the Orange in front of the camera, thinking aloud: “I can’t think of a way to slightly slant a round thing for the photographs. It’s just … so shiny.” All are mesmerized.
The difficulties of this teardown are not for the faint of heart. First, there’s the issue of Orange identification—a daunting task indeed. Jake creates an apeeling identification page full of objects that are frequently mistaken for Oranges: cucumbers, apples, Donald Trump.
Then there’s the Orange itself—a sly, acidic mistress who keeps her secrets well hidden beneath the mysterious adhesive that binds the fruit together. When multiple tools prove hopeless against the impressive Orange rind, the big guns must be unleashed—the big heat guns, that is. Like Jack Bauer questioning a suspect, Andrew fearlessly applies the heat. As the unique scent of charred Orange fills the room, curious noses turn up outside our door. “That’s a delightful smell!” a passerby exclaims. Others (me) respectfully disagree.
The failure of the heat gun turns the crew despondent. “This is dirty. And complicated. And I’m tired,” Andrew laments. The Orange mocks us all. For a moment, the team fears this whole teardown is pointless—nay, pithless. Read the rest of this article »