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Samsung Note 10+ Teardown – TWO Wireless Chargers?


The Galaxy Note 10 is usually the Swiss Army
Knife of all smartphones. It’s the phone that
has everything and can do everything…or
at least it used to be before Samsung removed
the headphone jack. Today we’re going to review
the Galaxy Note 10+ from the inside, see what
makes it tick, and see if there was actually
room for that jack. Let’s get started.
Let’s get started.
You have to hold the power
and volume down button at the same time to
turn off the phone…because that makes a
whole lot of sense.
Let’s get started.
[Intro]
This video is actually going to be super interesting.
The Note 10+ is arguably one of the most feature-rich
smartphones on the market right now. To remove
the vivid back panel, we’ll break out the
heat gun. Glass and metal sandwiches tend
to all be built the same. With a glass panel,
I do have to take special care not to flex
the glass too much or the whole thing might
shatter.
Once the adhesive is warmed up and softened
underneath the glass, my suction cup can pull
up and my razor blade and pry tools can slice
through the adhesive that’s holding the panel
to the frame. It’s a very tedious process.
The inexpensive plastic Galaxy A50 was just
as colorful as this Note 10, and it used a
plastic panel which is way more durable than
glass. One thing that makes this Note 10 even
harder than usual to open up is the curve
of the glass that wraps around the side portions
of the phone. Any pressure in the wrong spot
along that curve might shatter the whole panel.
With enough time, patience, and a slight headache
from looking at this flashy tie-dyed tech,
we finally get the back panel to separate
from the phone. The rear glass doesn’t have
any electronics attached to it. All the wireless
charging is built into the phone body.
To go deeper, we’ll have to remove 14 normal
Phillips head screws. Thumbs up to Samsung
for not using proprietary screws. Once those
are out I can fold over the metal plate and
unplug the golden battery connector. The wireless
charging coil is plugged in right next to
it. Unplugging that releases the wireless
coil from the phone. You might be thinking
to yourself, ‘Hey Jerry, why do you keep calling
this black sheet a coil?’ That’s because it
is. You can see the circular shape of the
copper windings underneath the black covering.
These internal copper windings inside the
Note 10+ will rest on top of the copper windings
found inside of a wireless charging pad. The
pair of coils creates an electromagnetic field
through which energy can transfer into the
phone. This might come as a surprise, but
this large wireless charging coil isn’t the
only wireless coil found inside the Note 10.
On the left side of the phone we see a large
rectangular housing. This is used to store
the s-pen, and at the very top of that housing
where the tip of the pen sits when it’s parked
inside of the phone is a little baby wireless
charger. I can peel off the black tape to
reveal the miniature copper coils that sit
right on top of the coils wrapped around the
tip of the stylus. Once again creating two
sets of coils that form another smaller electromagnetic
field. Power flows from the phone battery
through the two coils and into the s-pen capacitor
which we discovered when we carefully disassembled
the s-pen in the durability test video. This
wireless transfer is also why the s-pen cannot
be made from metal since metal obstructs wireless
charging. It’s some pretty mind blowing tech
and we’ve barely even started this teardown.
Let’s pull off the top black plastics. This
reveals a dual colored motherboard – both
blue and green. A transparent Note 10 would
look pretty awesome. I’ll unplug the power
and volume buttons. The connectors just unplug
like a little Lego. I can remove the front
facing camera. It’s a 10 megapixel little
guy with no optical image stabilization. The
black square here in the center of the motherboard
is the earpiece strangely enough. It’s in
a weird location. We’ll dig more into that
in just a second. I’ll pop off the three ribbon
cables down here along the bottom of the motherboard,
along with another ribbon on the right side,
each unsnapping like a little Lego. Then I
can remove the SIM and SD card tray. Remember
that Samsung made three versions of this phone.
The regular size Note 10 does not have an
SD card slot.
The dual colored motherboard can lift away
from the phone housing at this point. The
reason why this motherboard has two colors
is that it’s actually two motherboards stacked
on top of each other. Kind of like what we
say inside of the newer iPhones. It’s a thick
sandwich of really expensive technology. Surprisingly
though, even with the extra thick motherboard,
there’s no thermal paste on the back, just
a gray foamy pad looking thing.
Let’s take a look at the cameras. This block
of cameras is another piece of mind blowing
tech. The Note 10+ wide angle camera is up
top with no optical image stabilization. Then
there’s a regular 12 megapixel normal camera
which does have OIS. And then a 12 megapixel
two times optical zoom camera at the bottom.
This also has OIS. Samsung is the only manufacturer
to release a variable aperture camera unit.
Just like, you know, your pupils are just
inside of your eyeball to get the optimal
light for your eye. This little circle opens
and closes to get the optimal amount of light
for Samsung’s camera sensor, depending on
the situation. It’s pretty cool.
The lens on the right side is a depth sensor.
We’ve seen this pop up in a lot of phones
lately and it’s only available on the Note
10+. We’re going to check out the copper cooling
pad here in a second, but first we need to
uncover the charging port. The black plastics
come off easy enough since we already took
out the screws. The plastics contain the bottom
loudspeaker. It’s got the same little baffle
balls hidden inside the speaker like we saw
in the OnePlus phones. It’s a little ball
pit for ants.
I’ll remove the two extension ribbons and
the three additional screws. Then the whole
little charging port can come away from the
frame of the phone. With the Galaxy S10, this
port was not replaceable so I’m glad Samsung
changed their minds and didn’t permanently
attach the charging port to the motherboard
again. Another change is that now we have
a square vibration motor. This probably contains
a similar taptic feel that the iPhones have.
And we also have the same water resistant
mesh over the speaker and microphone openings
that we’ve seen inside the phones for a couple
years now. These help the Note keep water
out for its ip68 rating.
What about the question: Is there actually
room in here for the headphone jack? The answer
is yes, there is always room. The circuit
boards can be designed and rearranged however
Samsung wants. Proof of that is here with
the double stacked motherboard. Stacking the
motherboard allows for more room. They could
just have easily stacked parts of the lower
charging port board and added the headphone
jack at the bottom. Or stacked more of the
upper board onto each other to make room for
the port up top. Easy peasy. It’s no coincidence
that Apple removed the headphone jack at the
same time they launched their wireless air
pods. Or that OnePlus lost the headphone jack
when they launched their bullet headphones.
Or even the Pixel lost the headphone jack
when they launched the Pixel Buds. And now
Samsung lost the jack as they push their wireless
Galaxy Buds. Coincidence? Absolutely not.
Removing the jack coerces customers into buying
additional technology from the same company
who made your phone. Companies know this and
companies like this. Another thing companies
do is make your phone harder to repair so
that instead of fixing it, you just go buy
a new one. And Samsung is just as guilty as
the rest of them with this permanently glued
in battery. Each bend of this battery as I
try to remove it, is super dangerous. The
internal layers could pinch together and short
out at any moment, causing a fire. You would
think that Samsung would want to avoid exploding
batteries and just add easy to remove pull
tabs like Apple does, especially considering
their history. And as the largest smartphone
manufacturer in the world, Samsung should
be leading the way with battery pull tabs
or gentle adhesive so that one, I don’t blow
my fingers off, and two, so that I can stop
saying Apple has them beat in one area. That’s
more painful than losing a finger.
The battery of the Note 10+ is a 4300 milliamp
hour. The regular Note 10 would be a 3500
milliamp hour. Another mind blowing piece
of tech inside this Note 10+ is this super
slim under screen fingerprint scanner glued
directly underneath the screen. During my
Galaxy S10 teardown video I broke open the
whole phone to show the insides and talk more
about how this works. Today though, I’m going
to keep the Note 10 in one piece so hopefully
it will still turn on when I put the whole
thing back together. Seeing the outline of
the scanner with my LED light is pretty cool
though.
There are a few things left before we reassemble
the phone. A water damage indicator sticker
here next to the SIM card tray opening. And
then we have the earpiece which is strangely
pretty far away from the actual earpiece grill
location. Popping it out reveals that it is
indeed a speaker and not the under display
vibrating technology we saw inside the LG
G8. It looks like the speaker fires downward
into a hollow channel between the frame and
the screen. Then the sound is directed up
towards the top of the phone to eject out
the hole near the SIM card tray. There’s also
a super incredibly thin opening between the
front glass and metal top of the phone. It’s
pretty hard to see since it’s only 5 human
hairs thick. I actually use human hair to
measure everything which explains a lot.
Finally we come to the heat pipe or vapor
chamber as Samsung calls it. We normally only
see this type of cooling in high end gaming
phones like the Razer Phone 2 or the Black
Shark 2. It’s cool to see the technology making
making it’s way into non-gaming phones. As
we know, solid copper is a great conductor
of heat. It pulls away heat from hot objects
like processors and goes and dissipates that
heat elsewhere inside the phone. Heat pipes
are more efficient than a copper slab because
of the liquid inside the pipe. The vapor chambers
like the one we see here take cooling to a
whole new level – beyond that even of heat
pipes Slicing the vapor chamber open, we can
see that it’s a hollow pouch with plenty of
room inside for liquid to move around. The
liquid will vaporize at one end where the
processor is heating up, and then cool down
as it reaches the far end of the chamber.
Only to be wicked back again to the processor
by the copper strands and copper mesh capillary
action so it can start the whole process over
again. It’s kind of like a liquid cooling
system built for PCs but crammed down into
a really small space. The liquid is still
present here in the pouch even after I opened
it up and messed around at the insides.
The wire wicking mesh is pretty interesting.
The copper vapor chamber does a good job of
helping the phone run efficiently, but it’s
not mandatory for functionality. The phone
should still work and turn on without this
in place. We’ll see if that’s true in just
a few seconds as we assemble the phone.
The Note lineup used to be the absolute pinnacle
of everything that Android phones were capable
of, so I’m sad to see now that Samsung dropped
even one useful feature like the headphone
jack. But even without that feature, it’s
still one of the most, if not the most, well-designed
and feature-rich cellphones you can buy right
now. So if you’re looking for the best of
the best, and willing to pay a premium for
100% of what smartphones are capable of right
now, this is probably the phone to get. Just
keep in mind that you can probably get a perfectly
decent phone that does 90% of what the Note
10 does for about half the cost from someone
else.
Smartphones decrease in value faster than
a piece of used gum, so unless you make money
with your smartphone, you can always just
go get last year’s version for a fraction
of the price. There aren’t very many substantial
improvements between one year and another.
Would you look at that. The whole thing still
turns on. Gotta love that. The Note 10+ is
a very tempting phone. I’ll probably upgrade
at some point in the future when there’s a
price drop or I can find a good deal. But
for now I’ll just stick with my 2 ½ year
old Galaxy 8+ for a little while longer.
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ton for watching. I’ll see you around.

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