Google Nexus S Teardown

Cracking open the Nexus S

In December 2010, Google partnered with Samsung to release the Nexus S--a variant of Samsung's Galaxy S line of phones.

Check out our teardown of the Samsung Galaxy S Captivate.

After testing the device, TechRepublic's Jason Hiner was less than enthusiastic about the new device:

"Overall, the Google Nexus S feels like a step backward for the Nexus line of “Google phones,” and not just because of Google’s less ambitious agenda with the product. The Nexus S just doesn’t offer enough important hardware upgrades from the Nexus One to make up for the lower build quality."

Despite Jason's lackluster review, we wanted to see the hardware inside this new Google phone. So, follow along as we crack open the Nexus S.

Photo by: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
Caption by: Bill Detwiler


Bill Detwiler is Managing Editor of TechRepublic and Tech Pro Research and the host of Cracking Open, CNET and TechRepublic's popular online show. Prior to joining TechRepublic in 2000, Bill was an IT manager, database administrator, and desktop supp...


Interesting though these teardowns are, they could be a bit more specific. 1. There are too many pictures in the beginning of the series just depicting the phone in different "poses". 2. I can't really see the point in the comparison of some parts of different models. Not many people have them all at home at the same time, and if they do, what are they suppose to do about it? If a part from one phone can directly be replaced by the same part in the other phone, then it's a different story and very relevant. 3. I would really like to see some red arrows pointing at what the text is referring to in each picture. Like if it says "Remove the seven screws holding the board", where exactly are these seven screws? Some of them may be hidden or otherwise difficult to notice. Same thing with the connectors. 4. If one owns such a phone, it would be nice to get all the pictures and helpful texts together in a pdf-file for future reference and repair. On the other hand, the pictures are very sharp and well lit, so no complaints there. I would prefer "replacementprocedure" to "teardown", but maybe it's an unnecessarily long word. The only reason for anyone to look at these pictures, as far as I can see, is if someone is going to repair or replace a part on the phone (probably the screen in that case). I do a lot of partreplacements, that's why I look at these photoseries quite often, but as mentioned, they could be a bit more helpful.

Bill Detwiler
Bill Detwiler moderator

The Google Nexus S had a few standout features--a curved Super AMOLED display and NFC support. But, it's single-core processor will be serious limitation as smartphones are released with dual-core chips this year. Is the Google Nexus S already behind the times?

Bill Detwiler
Bill Detwiler moderator

I usually try to include photos of the gadget's different sides to show the various ports and buttons. And, to provide a general description of the device. As for the arrows/circles/other indicators, we've talked about this for a while. There are arguments for and against. On one hand, they are great for showing where the screws that we're talking about are. On the other, they can obscure part of the photos. I'll try it on the next gallery and see what people think. As for the PDFs, we're working on that.