Today’s Teardown Is a Little … Pixel-ated (XL)

Google is steadily continuing down its path of world domination. And now they’re taking on the smartphone market—all by themselves this time! The Pixel and Pixel XL are the first phones designed entirely by Google from the ground up. Despite trending toward an iPhone aesthetic (like most phones this year), the Pixel family is both reminiscent of and departs from previous Google designs.

iPhone and Google Pixel XL comparison
Seeing a little bit double? The Pixel XL is on the right. The iPhone is on the left.

They started with the usual Android modularity—but got a little lost when packing all those goodies into a brand-new box. For example, it’s got a slick pull tab on the battery … under a slim, easy-to-bust display. The first phone is always R&D—and Google will probably iron out the details in the next run. Assuming this one doesn’t start blowing up like a Note7.

Inside the Google Pixel XL

Google Pixel XL Teardown Highlights:

  • The Pixel XL’s 13.28 Wh battery beats out the 11.1 Wh iPhone 7 Plus, but not the Galaxy S7 Edge’s 13.86 Wh powerhouse (or the Note7’s 13.48 Wh bomb battery).
  • We break things so other folks don’t, which is to say … we broke our Pixel XL when removing the screen. The OLED panel separated from the digitizer glass a little too easily for our liking. Super-thin components and no frame or bezel behind the display make it extra sketchy—but not impossible—to get into this device.
  • Due to its mostly modular design (once you get past that pesky display), the Google Pixel XL nabbed a 7/10 on our repairability scale. Not the best-ever, but still better than we’ve ever scored an HTC—which is ironic, considering that HTC actually fab’d this phone.

Don’t forget: this is just the highlights of our Pixel XL teardown. You can see the whole Pixel XL teardown here.