Nexus 6P A Marvel Of Engineering Prowess But Teardown Shows It’s A Bear To Fix

Google is prepping a new flagship phone for pre-order sale, the Nexus 6P, and it looks every bit a top-end device. Naturally the only logical thing to do with a high-tech handset loaded to the brim with cutting edge components is tear into the sucker and get a close-up look at its guts. Ah, but save yourself the cost and stress and disassembling a $500 device, it's already been done.

Fresh off a teardown analysis of the Surface Pro 4, the gutty geeks at iFixIt turned their attention from tablets to smartphones by prying open the Nexus 6P. The teardown actually represents a first for the website -- yes, they've taken apart scores of phones and Android products in the past, but this is the first time they've had a product built by Chinese manufacturer Huawei land on the operating table (something tells us it won't be the last).

Nexus 6P Opened

The Nexus 6P is also the first Nexus device to sport an all-metal, aeronautical-grade anodized aluminum chassis. It's has a unibody design without any visible screws on the rear cover, which begs the question, how do you tear into the thing? The answer is by way of a small plastic panel at the bottom. After heating it up (to melt the adhesive), the panel pops off to reveal four screws, one of which is covered with a seal that, once busted, will undoubtedly void any applicable warranty. But hey, you don't need no stinkin' warranty, right?

Removing the panel can be a nerve wracking affair due to its tight fit and the "easily shattered glass." On the bright side, there's not a lot of adhesive holding it together, though it still took the seasoned teardown veterans at iFixIt "several frustrating minutes" to pop the phone out of its rear enclosure.

Nexus 6P Battery

One of the main reasons why a phone owner might want to disassemble their device in the first place is to swap out a battery that no longer holds a charge. Unfortunately, that's not easy to do on the Nexus 6P. Even if you're successful in prying open the chassis without shattering the screen (and subsequently soiling your shorts), once you get to the massive 3,450 mAh battery (230 mAh more than the Nexus 6 and 700 mAh more than the iPhone 6s Plus), you'll find that it's "fiercely glued" in place.

When the gut job was over, the Nexus 6P earned praise for a "solid external construction" and a battery that's immediately accessible (once you tear apart the chassis), though "it's very difficult" to open the phone without damaging the glass camera cover. And due to the unibody design, "every component [is] extremely difficult to replace.

Nexus 6P Parts

Along with a few other complaints, such as "tough adhesive" holding the rear cover and battery in place, the Nexus 6P end up with a 2 out of 10 Repairability Score, same as the aforementioned Surface Pro 4.

If you're still interested, the Nexus 6P will be available to pre-order starting November 7, 2015, direct from Google.