Teardown team: Google's Nexus 5 the most fixable high-end phone on the market

Researchers at iFixit have found that Google's recently-released Nexus 5 is one of the most eminently fixable high-end smartphones on the market today.

According to the team, who regularly perform destructive "teardowns" of the latest devices, the Nexus 5 is one of the few phones not to have the two main chassis components glued together, as Apple's iPhone 5S does, for instance.

Instead, they are held together with plastic clips secured with a little adhesive foam. This makes it much easier to gain access to its innards, although we would only advise this for users experienced in hardware repairs.

"Google gives us the Goldilocks of glue," said the team. "It's just enough to hold the battery in place, but not too much."

The team gave Google's latest phone an 8/10 score for fixability.

Marks were lost because the front panel and screen are fused together. The team bemoaned how "the front frame, LCD, and glass are doomed to a single shared death sometime down the road."

On the plus side, the Nexus 5 also has an incredibly modular approach to its smaller components, massively improving the ease with which they can be removed and replaced. Perhaps Google has been taking a leaf out of its subsidiary Motorola's book: the recently-acquired mobile maker has reportedly been working on a completely modular smartphone, dubbed Project Ara.

As a boon to would-be repairers, Google has even ensured that all of its screws are available from common vendors, and that every joint in the phone uses the same screw.

This will come as welcome news to DIY fix-it fans, and will certainly add to Google's claim of having released the biggest high-end bargain of the year. For now, we'll wait for Motorola's Ara before we claim to have a truly unbreakable phone on the market.

Image: iFixit