Repair enthusiasts iFixit have pried open the Galaxy Fold-again, to investigate the changes Samsung has made. As you might have guessed, the South Korean giant has administered some quick fixes. After all, the company couldn't have redesigned the phone from scratch in such a short period of time. As the Galaxy Fold teardown shows, the device is still pretty fragile.
This was actually obvious from the get-go. Samsung has practically been begging users to be extremely gentle with the phone. Moreover, the chaebol has also made an unreasonable request, asking users to protect the phone from dust. The reason why phones come with dust and water resistance is that companies know we don't live in a perfect world. You cannot guard a device against foreign substances at all times. If it's any consolation, the Galaxy Fold teardown has revealed that the board with all the important chips inside has some silicone seals.
Galaxy Fold Teardown Reveals Important Changes To The Hinge And The Display
Overall, the company has tried to cover many exposed spots. Because of those changes, the phone weighs a little more than its first version. The previously bare hinges are now covered in tape to safeguard against debris. iFixit believes dirt might still accumulate over time, although it's unlikely that all that tape will let foreign substances make it to the display. The final verdict on this is that the hinge is well-engineered and likely to last a long time.
The Galaxy Fold teardown also shows that Samsung has closed the gaps in the hard plastic bezel on both sides of the phone. As with previously mentioned fixes, this will also prevent dirt from sneaking in. However, the spine of the device still has gaps, which are unlikely to cause immediate display damage but might still provide a pathway for dust.
The screen protector, which many reviewers had mistakenly taken off, now sits under the bezel. Beneath the bezels, Samsung has now placed T-shaped plastic protection caps. While this is definitely an improvement over the original Galaxy Fold, it remains to be seen if it will be effective enough to keep dirt and debris out.
During the Galaxy Fold teardown, iFixit also stumbled upon an extra metal layer beneath the display. These support plates will give the center spine of the phone a wider-radius fold. Theoretically, this should make the phone more durable.
The Phone Is Still Pretty Breakable
Overall, the phone is still considered really fragile. Folding it once is enough to wrinkle the middle portion of the inner display. The interior bezel lip looks too light, and there is a real chance it might come off after prolonged use.
iFixit says that screen damage seems unavoidable, which is perhaps the reason why Samsung will replace it once for only $149. Samsung has apparently not updated the display driver software, which might make for some uncomfortable scrolling.
The Galaxy Fold is Samsung's first attempt at making bendable phones and thus it's not surprising to see that it's inherently flawed. Over the course of the next few generations, we can expect the design to get more refined. In the meanwhile, tech enthusiasts seem eager to try out the phone, with some even willing to pay double the retail price to get their hands on it.