The Essential Phone is unreasonably difficult to repair, close to impossible

The Essential Phone is unreasonably difficult to repair, close to impossible
When Andy Rubin announced its start-up will launch an Android smartphone called Essential Phone, many have been reluctant that the device will find its place among the flagships launched by more experience and tradition in the industry.

After a couple of missed deadlines, it became clear that the Essential Phone was not ready for prime time. Now that the smartphone is shipping to those who placed pre-orders, people are probably wondering whether or not to purchase it.

At first glance, the Essential Phone looks like an unusual device, but not necessarily in a bad way. But how easy would be for someone to repair the smartphone in case of issues?

The fine folks at iFixit have torn down the Essential Phone and their findings are not encouraging at all. Before going into details, let's mention Essential's smartphone scored 1 out of 10 on the repairability scale, which means it's almost impossible to fix.

First off, “due to nearly invisible seams and copious adhesive, any attempt at repair is likely to inflict as much damage as it fixes.” Basically, the smartphone is extremely hard to open, which may lead to damages to the chassis.

Moreover, the USB-C port is attached directly to the motherboard, and because of the lack of headphone jack, people will most likely use it quite a lot, thus wearing it out faster than it should.

Furthermore, the 8-megapixel front-facing camera is placed on the same module as the earpiece speaker. Finally, the battery is hardly accessible, so it will almost impossible to replace in case of need. You can find more details about the Essential Phone's teardown at the link below.

source: iFixit

Related phones

  • Display 5.7" 1312 x 2560 pixels
  • Camera 13 MP / 8 MP front
  • Processor Qualcomm Snapdragon 835, Octa-core, 2450 MHz
  • Storage 128 GB
  • Battery 3040 mAh



1. libra89

Posts: 2298; Member since: Apr 15, 2016

Not surprised at all. Just look at what it is made of!

2. Plasticsh1t

Posts: 3109; Member since: Sep 01, 2014

I miss the days of the removable back cover and removable batteries. Good days.

3. fyahking

Posts: 1146; Member since: Jan 28, 2015

That's why I still have my G4, 5 and V20.

11. NoToFanboys

Posts: 3231; Member since: Oct 03, 2015

Same sentiments, will get a V20 for that reason.

12. fyahking

Posts: 1146; Member since: Jan 28, 2015

Get some type of skins on the back of the battery cover. The V20 is very slippery and I hate cases.You will enjoy the V20, especially the music through the quad dac

13. NoToFanboys

Posts: 3231; Member since: Oct 03, 2015

I usually put a case on my phone, so that wont be an issue. Regarding the music part, I will enjoy it for sure, that quad DAC is also one of the reasons I like the V20.

4. PhoneInQuestion

Posts: 496; Member since: Aug 20, 2017

I wasn't expecting an easy to repair flagship, you shouldn't even be taking these until you have 100% of the required tools to do so. Even then all you can do really is replace the battery or display.

5. Cat97

Posts: 1935; Member since: Mar 02, 2017

Trying to repair a highly-miniaturized device is just nuts, it's like trying to repair a microchip. Just enjoy it, and either have a warranty or insurance or just take the risk.

9. Pabliell

Posts: 185; Member since: Mar 22, 2016

It's not nuts, since everyone else has somehow done it. Better or worse, but most of the newest flagships so far are repairable. You can quite easily switch screen, USB port, battery or camera. It's just hard to open the device. Here, with the Essential Phone it's really really hard to do so, but it doesn't mean other phones cannot be opened and repaired.

10. epdm2be

Posts: 824; Member since: Apr 20, 2012

Sure, but "they" have to understand that nobody in their right mind will pay an arm and a leg for what's "essentially" a disposable phone. Thus it will fail commercially

6. Nopers unregistered

They say it’s supposed to last you two years too. What a joke.

7. L0n3n1nja

Posts: 1579; Member since: Jul 12, 2016

With it that difficult to open and replace the battery resale value will probably be horrible.

8. PhoneInQuestion

Posts: 496; Member since: Aug 20, 2017

You can forget resale value whatsoever, there's no guarantee that the battery being replaced even by a professional would guarantee even $200 in resale, even if it was a perfect replacement.

14. killer7D

Posts: 551; Member since: Sep 18, 2014

That's why it is called the "Essential Phone" .. LOOOOOOOOL Don't believe those Startups like Rubin, Essential and even Oneplus .. They will start selling high spec'd phones for very low prices and then they will start increasing the prices for no reason.

15. trojan_horse

Posts: 5868; Member since: May 06, 2016

"and then they will start increasing the prices for no reason." For no reason? They start to increase the price because cost of production/manufacturing increases too!

16. Martin_Cooper

Posts: 1774; Member since: Jul 30, 2013

Love it how the father of Android is something to be proud of. Android before iOS came out was utter s**t utter bulls**t aimed for non touch screen devices. It became an ok-ish touch screen OS 2 years after when iOS came out. There is nothing to be proud of as the guy who started android as your goal and aim before copying iOS was pathetic. If anything Google made the android a great OS that it is today. Didnt expect much from his phone either.

17. TeriusRose

Posts: 108; Member since: May 12, 2017

I get it, you don't like android. That is fine, I just don't understand what you get out of ranting about that unless your goal here is to annoy strangers.

18. NexusX

Posts: 613; Member since: May 16, 2013

I can't agree more, by the way, the system that he "created" was based off of Linux so i don't know "creator" is the right word to use. he basically took an already free open-source os, skinned it with IOS-like interface and gave it out for free to all smartphone OEMS who were too lazy or cheap to develop their own OS. his engineers probably did all the heavylifting. oh his company of one DOA product is worth over a billion dollars. we have only ourselves to blame for not having the right circle of friends. F this guy.

19. NexusX

Posts: 613; Member since: May 16, 2013

Android was to IOS as Google Home is to Amazon Echo. It was just another one of Google's me-too product.

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