iFixit regularly does dissections of the latest Apple gadgets, but this time the repair resource site pitted its tools against other tools by taking apart Apple’s new self-service iPhone repair kit (Going through iMore). The disassembly process for Apple’s repair tools was documented and posted on iFixit’s YouTube channelgiving a on the inside look at display press, battery press and heated display removal gear.
The video begins with a teardown of the screen press, which has a very smooth grip that the iFixit host liked the most, describing it as a “swan taking flight every time it slides up.” The handle is smooth because it uses ball bearings that move on a running track like a conveyor belt as the press moves up and down. It also houses an easily removable AA-size lithium battery that is held in a C-size shell, powering a small control board that activates the countdown display.
The screen press has a tessellated rubber frame that presses down on the phone to seal a new sealing adhesive. Each section of the frame has varying spring force, but the strongest force is reserved for the corners.
The tool video teardown was done on those purchased by iFixit, costing around $587.35 for the three tools based on the prices set on Apple’s Self Service site. You don’t have to buy all of these tools as Apple will send them to you as a rental kit for $49, but there is a catch.
The edgeSean Hollister tested the kit himself and found out how difficult Apple makes it for people who want to do a simple repair themselves. Along with the $49 and $69 rental fee for the new battery (the same amount you would pay at an Apple Store), Apple also required a $1,200 deposit to ensure that the 79 books of tools repair in the Pelican cases it sends are returned to the company. safe and sound.
The setup looks surprisingly over-engineered but also very well-designed – although the other press which is for the battery was less impressive and “boring”, according to the iFixit host. They described the battery press as a “refined lawsuit prevention system”, alluding to its primary function of reducing the risk that the user could puncture and cause a battery fire. But all it does is press a silicone roller onto the battery with precise force, just enough to grip the new battery.
The third tool is the heated display remover, the most complex of the three tools in the video. Host iFixit describes it as “janky” due to its looks and since it comes with an unmistakable white power cord – the same angled one that comes with 2012 and newer Intel iMacs. This tool comes with a “hot pocket” which is basically a specially sized metal frame for the iPhone you are about to open. If you press the hot pocket in the heated screen removal tool, it activates a switch that allows it to start heating, but only if it detects that a phone is actually installed in it. The host also found that the LCD on the front is technically a touchscreen but not used that way at all.