The repair experts at iFixit have put Apple’s latest iPhone to the test and shared their findings. Though the phone is similar in many ways to Apple’s new flagships, the iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max, there are a few important differences.
All in all, iFixit rated the iPhone XR a 6/10 in repairability, which is the same score given to the iPhone XS and and iPhone XS Max. But though they were rated the same, the teardown experts did share a few interesting findings.
The phone has characteristics of two recent iPhones: the iPhone X and the iPhone 8. Instead of the L-shaped battery of the iPhone X and XS, it has a rectangular battery, like the iPhone 8. But, like the iPhone X, it ditches the home button and Touch ID for Face ID’s extra sensors.
All this, according to iFixit, makes the iPhone XR the “spiritual ‘iPhone 9.'” (Prior to Apple’s unveiling, many referred to the rumored low-cost 6.1-inch iPhone as the “iPhone 9,” assuming the company follow 2017’s naming conventions.)
One thing that might come as a surprise to some, though, is that iFixit says the two most common repairs — display and battery replacements — are actually easier on the iPhone XR than on most Android phones.
“The display-first opening procedure and easy access to the battery remain design priorities for Apple—making the two most common repairs easier than almost any Android counterpart,” iFixit’s Kay Clapp writes on the company’s blog.
Other tidbits of noted, from iFixit:
- The iPhone XR uses copper, which “should mean faster charging with less heat”
- The phone’s SIM reader is modular, likely to support dual-SIM capabilities
- Like the iPhone XS and XS Max, the iPhone XR’s glass back means you have an extra surface to potentially crack, which would require you replace the phone’s entire chassis