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HUAWEI Mate XS teardown: Foldable phones are still DIY nightmares

DIY repair website praised the Mate XS for its ingress protection, but there wasn't much else to be happy about.

Published onApril 15, 2020

Foldable phones have proven to be difficult to repair, owing to the cutting-edge components and complex designs involved. Now, DIY repair website iFixit has disassembled the HUAWEI Mate XS, and the company’s latest foldable is no exception.

The HUAWEI Mate XS earned a dismal two out of 10 rating from iFixit, matching the Galaxy Fold and Galaxy Z Flip‘s rating and going one better than the Motorola Razr‘s one out of 10 score.

Huawei’s foldable was criticized for the charging port being soldered to the mainboard, as well as the fact that every repair required users to deal with “stubborn, glued-on outer covers.”

The HUAWEI Mate XS via iFixit.

Furthermore, the website noted that battery replacements are straightforward, but criticized the “Herculean” adhesive used here. It added that screen replacements were indeed possible, but bemoaned the process to get it removed. It wasn’t all bad though, as the outlet praised the Mate XS for having modular components that could be replaced independently.

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iFixit gave us a closer look at the foldable’s hinge as well, concluding that it should do a good job of keeping dust and other foreign substances out of the display.

“The Mate XS is a pain to work with but we’re guessing it will hold up considerably better to real-world exposure than the Galaxy Fold due to better ingress protection and sturdier construction,” the website noted.

Our own Kris Carlon thought the foldable was worth buying if you didn’t care for Google services or if you didn’t find the eye-watering ~$2700 price to be off-putting. What would it take for you to buy a foldable phone though?

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