iFixit has recently published the teardown of Microsoft’s Surface Go, the company’s most recent tablet that comes with a $400 price tag and hardware that places it in the mid-range category.
The first notable finding is that the Surface Go uses two different battery packs, both of which are glued in. iFixit says this not only prevents customers from extending the battery life by replacing worn-out packs, but also increases costs for recyclers at the end of the device’s life.
Surface Go uses a 26.12 Wh battery, which is the smallest Microsoft has used until now, and also substantially smaller than the iPad 32.9 Wh unit.
Microsoft has used a lot of adhesive on the Surface Go, and iFixit offered a repairability score of 1 out of 10. While it’s somehow easier to remove the screen without breaking it given the size, it’s still “terrifyingly hard,” the teardown reveals.
“We encounter the same kind of goopy glue as before, but the smaller, sturdier display makes the opening procedure seem a little less scary. A long display cable makes it easier to disconnect the display without damaging the cable, for safer and easier display removal,” iFixit explains.
While the score itself shows that it’s a nightmare to repair the Surface Go, iFixit emphasizes that while it may be able to replace a PC, it’s nearly impossible to upgrade it, which will “severely limited the device’s lifespan.”
“Adhesive holds many components in place, including the display and battery. Replacement of any part requires removal of the display assembly, an easy (and expensive) part to damage,” iFixit says.
Surface Go is available from $399 from the Microsoft Store, and the device comes with a new line of accessories that includes keyboards to convert it to a laptop form factor. Microsoft also offers discounts for the education market.