High End HTC One M8 Scores Low Marks For Do-It-Yourself Repairs

As was expected, HTC introduced its new One (M8) handset yesterday, and judging by the media coverage and user comments, there appears to be a fair amount of excitement over the company's new flagship device. Understandable, considering it features a large 5-inch Full HD 1080p display powered by a 2.3GHz quad-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 processor. And unlike the original One, the new version sports a microSD card slot. Good stuff, though if you're looking for an Achilles Heel, the folks at iFixIt have found one.

Like its predecessor, the HTC One M8 isn't a repair-friendly device. Getting it open requires heating up the adhesive to soften the glue, and then prying off the speaker grill with a thin object like a guitar pick. There are screws underneath, and once removed, the handset separates into two parts.

HTC One M8 Open

Unfortunately, that's where Easy St. comes to a dead end. Things quickly turn "ugly" when diving any deeper into the One M8, which is littered with tape, tape, and more tape. Your reward for getting past all that tape is a series of 10 cables that need to be disconnected so that you can focus on the glued down motherboard.

Why would anyone need to gut a smartphone like that? To be fair, most people won't. However, it's the only way to get to the 'non-removable' battery, which could come into play if the handset is out of its warranty period. Non-removable batteries aren't always easy to get to, but they're usually not buried underneath a glued-down motherboard, either.

HTC One M8 Teardown

When all was said and done, iFixIt gave the HTC One M8 a 2 out of 10 Repairability Score, which is one point higher than the original One. That's not a deal killer for anyone considering the One M8, but something to keep in mind if you like to tinker with your gadgets.