The Samsung Galaxy S10 with it's bezel-less screen and cheerio looking camera hole over
the top corner, it's quite possibly one of the most feature rich flagships of 2019.
With it's under screen ultrasonic fingerprint scanner and reverse wireless charging, it's
time to take a look at it all from the inside.
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And thanks to dbrand for sponsoring this teardown.
It's time to review the Galaxy S10 from the inside.
Let's get started.
Glass backed phones might look intimidating to take apart at first glance.
No visible screws, just a solid glass sandwich.
But it's actually not too bad.
I can use my heat gun to get the phone warmed up till it's just barely too hot to touch,
and then pull up on the glass with a large suction cup while simultaneously slipping
a razor between the frame and the glass to cut away the adhesive, and then repeating
the process several times.
Keep the phone super hot and the adhesive soft.
The whole process only took me about 5 minutes and I still have all my fingers.
Not too shabby.
The first look inside the phone shows that the rear glass has nothing attached to it.
A clear S10 would definitely be possible.
With everything covered in black plastic though, there wouldn't be much to show off.
Nothing quite tops last year's clear Pixel 3.
The wireless charging pad doesn't look like it changed too much which makes sense.
Whether power is being sent or received, it's still going to happen through the circular
copper coils inside this pad.
Inductive coupling allows the coil to pull power from or transfer power to whatever wireless
charging coils are placed next to it.
There are 14 screws holding the wireless charger and black plastics to the motherboard.
Once the screws are gone, I can pop off the black plastics exposing the internal circuitry
of the Galaxy S10.
On the undersides of the plastic we see square contact pads that line up with the motherboard
to transfer that wireless power.
And then a few more square contact pads down here next to the loud speaker.
These also rest up against the motherboard.
Pretty normal stuff so far.
I'll unplug the battery and take out the SIM and SD card tray.
And then I can take my plastic pry tool and unclip the screen ribbon just like a little
The headphone jack ribbon and the front facing 10 megapixel cheerio camera also unplug.
It's not actually called a cheerio camera, I just can't help myself at this point.
No optical stabilization on this little guy, but we'll get an up close look at the underside
of that screen here in just a second.
There are 2 screws down at the bottom supporting the charging port, and another silver screw
up here in the main chunk of the motherboard.
And once those are unscrewed, the whole motherboard can come loose from the frame.
Now here's where we run into a problem.
You might have spotted it already.
The charging port is soldered onto the motherboard, and not removable.
This is super disappointing.
With last year's Galaxy S9, if your charging port or bottom microphone stopped working,
the replacement part could be purchased on Amazon for $15, keeping your phone alive for
But now that Samsung has made their charging port permanent and not replaceable, repairing
a charging port or microphone is not possible anymore.
This is some Apple-level anti-consumer planned obsolescence baloney.
USB-C, while pretty reliable, can still break with time or corrode.
The bottom microphone could also fail at any point.
It's pretty lame of Samsung to make it permanent.
Now if something stops working, you have to buy a whole new phone when your warranty runs
out, instead of replacing it for just $15.
From the Galaxy S6 till now, they've all been modular.
While that change is rather unfortunate, Samsung did add another camera up here which is good.
Now we have 3 cameras attached to the upper portion of the motherboard.
You might be thinking to yourself, man, that is an ugly color of plastic they are all sitting
Which is true.
But it's the natural color of plastic before dyes or coloring is added.
So Samsung is probably just saving a few pennies on a part that nobody sees...except for the
millions of us watching this teardown.
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On the left we have a 12 megapixel telephoto camera with optical image stabilization.
And in the center we have another 12 megapixel normal camera.
Samsung claims this has OIS as well, but I don't see a whole lot of movement.
And on the right we have a 16 megapixel ultra wide camera that I'm pretty excited about....not
excited enough to upgrade my Galaxy S8 just yet, but I do like where the future is headed.
The main center camera is still rocking Samsung's mechanical variable aperture.
This is normally controlled with magnets.
The little flaps dictate how much light can get into the sensor so it can take better
Samsung's doing some pretty cool stuff.
No glimpse of the ultrasonic fingerprint scanner yet.
I have a bad feeling it's going to be hard to get to.
Down here at the bottom of the phone we can see some waterproofing like the rubber water
resistant mesh around the loud speaker hole.
Pretty beastly stuff, and it's crazy seeing it all up close and personal like this, especially
when we remember it's really just the size of an ant.
The microphone has its own mesh square.
And the irreplaceable charging port attached to the motherboard has it's own rubber ring
to keep water out.
The headphone jack is removable.
And the vibrator is the same circular coin style vibrator motor Samsung has always used.
Take a loo at this heat pipe though.
I'll have to chop that open in a second...right after we get this battery out.
Samsung once again has made this pretty difficult with a lot of adhesive under the battery holding
The annoying part is, is that it's the same type of adhesive we see attached to magic
pull tabs, but Samsung has conveniently left off the pull tab part to make it difficult
It's disturbing how far companies like Apple, and now Samsung, are willing to go to keep
their phones non-repairable.
It's bad news for everybody.
It appears that dogs are allowed this time around.
And if you understood that reference, you watch too many of my videos and you should
probably go outside.
Let's get a closer look at that heat pipe.
There is a water damage indicator next to the SIM card tray opening.
And the copper pipe on the S10 is massive compared to the heat pipe on last year's S9.
I'll put both tear downs side by side for you.
It's crazy how much copper Samsung has added this time around.
It's still not quite as big as the Razer Phone 2's copper waterbed, but you can see the liquid
It evaporates as soon as I slice it open with my razor blade.
It also looks incredibly dirty inside which is something I haven't seen before.
Copper doesn't rust, it turns green when it oxidizes – not brown.
That's the same reason why the copper Statue of Liberty is green.
The mud inside this copper pipe is something else, and I'm not sure what or why.
Every heat pipe I've opened up has been clean.
There are copper strands inside though.
These help the liquid wick from one end of the pipe to the other to transfer heat.
So we've come to a crossroads here.
Normally I would stop the teardown at this point because removing the screen destroys
it, and I like to try to keep my phones in one piece so they work when I put them back
But the ultrasonic fingerprint scanner is hidden under the screen and the only way to
see it is to sacrifice the phone and keep going.
Alright, I'll flip a coin.
Heads - we take the screen off to see the ultrasonic scanner.
And tails – we put the phone back together in one piece.
Okay, heads – we take off the screen, and tails – we put the phone back together in
It's got to be fate.
One cool thing before we get started is the front sensors next to the cheerio camera,
like the proximity sensor, are under the display.
Just like One Plus's optical fingerprint scanner, they can see through the pixels.
The reason Samsung screens are impossible to remove in one piece is because the display
underneath the top glass layer is super fragile and will crack like a potato chip if anything
And since the whole front of the phone is the screen, there is a zero percent chance
of the screen surviving this removal process.
With the last bit of adhesive removed, the screen finally folds away from the phone frame,
exposing the circuitry of the ultrasonic fingerprint scanner.
This is kind of a long video, but don't fall asleep yet.
I'm going to unlatch the fingerprint scanner from the display ribbon and then slide by
tweezers under the ribbon to pull it out.
The ultrasonic fingerprint scanner is now disconnected, but the scanner itself is glued
to the underside of the super thin AMOLED display.
The rectangle can transmit high frequency sound waves through the glass that then bounce
off your finger and come back to the sensor, which then verifies if it's the right fingerprint
or not due to how the sound waves reflect off the ridges in your fingerprint.
Pretty awesome technology, especially with how thin it is.
We learned during my durability test that it does not function well with cracks or gouges
in the glass though, probably because it messes up how the sound waves reflect.
Even with all my attempts to get it off, all I managed to do was rip the cable.
There's no replacing the ultrasonic fingerprint scanner.
The glue holding it to the underside of the display is pretty permanent.
One thing that's super interesting about the scanner is that while the screen is taken
off, you can see the exact location and position of the ultrasonic rectangle when light is
shining on it from behind.
It's even more interesting when we see that the sensor is not positioned in the middle
like you might assume or expect.
It's actually 4 millimeters closer to the left side of the phone than it is to the right
side of the phone.
The off-center rectangle is because of where the ribbon was connected to the sensor...you
know, the part that I ripped off.
The ultrasonic sensor is indeed centered on the phone, Samsung just added a little extra
space to the left of the sensor connection for the ribbon.
That's why the whole thing looks off center.
Normally this stuff would never be visible when the phone is in one piece, I just thought
it was interesting.
Cool stuff though.
You can see the mill markings on the inner frame of the Galaxy S10, meaning the frame
was carved out of a solid block of aluminum.
That's probably what helps it be so strong.
I'm excited to see where ultrasonic fingerprint scanners are headed in the future.
They are so small and thin, it could easily fit anywhere underneath the display or cover
larger portions of the screen, or even fill the screen area entirely as the technology
The glass of the screen appears to be uncracked at the moment, but I'm still pretty sure that
the display is as dead as a doornail.
I'll toss everything together real quick to give it a try, including the motherboard and
the 3 screws holding it in place.
When I try to turn the phone on though, I get the briefest flash of light indicating
the display is totally dead – may it rest in piece.
Double pressing the power button still gets the camera to move though.
So the phone is alive, just needs a new screen.
Not too bad.
Incredible phone, awesome technology.
I wish it was more repairable, but at least now we know.
What feature do you think is most important on a smartphone?
Let me know down in the comments.
Come hang out with me on Twitter and Instagram, and see what your phone looks like with Swarm
on it using the link in the description.
Thanks a ton for watching, I'll see you around.