Motorola XOOM: Removing the LTE 4G placeholder card screws
The LTE 4G placeholder card is held in place with a pair of Torx T5 screws. two antenna wires are also connected to the card.
Photo by: Bill Detwiler / TechRepublic
Caption by: Bill Detwiler
Bill Detwiler has nothing to disclose. He doesn't hold investments in the technology companies he covers.
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 support specialist in the social research and energy industries. He has bachelor's and master's degrees from the University of Louisville, where he has also lectured on computer crime and crime prevention.
We have a several year old Xoom that I use for tutoring students at various mobile sites. Today it just decided not to turn on even though it was fully charged. After trying numerous times to "hard reboot" it, we gave up and started looking at how to pull the battery. Thanks to your easy to follow, instructions, we were able to do that in just about 45 minutes (after the hour long search for a T5 driver). We didn't have to fully remove the battery, so our process was a little shorter than seen here, but your instructions got us to where we could just "unplug" the battery, as opposed to actually removing it. It worked like a charm and the Xoom is up and running again. Thanks for posting this!
Does the 2G Sim card in India work in the Motorola Xoom (Honeycomb)?? I inserted the sim card but was not detected. Is the 2G compatible or should I upgrade to 3G?
I spent some time this weekend working on my son's ipod touch - I went back through your tear downs to find out how to do it safely but ended up on youtube learning it step by step (with pauses and restarts and a few swear words, I'll be honest). I love tech republic but your site has become laptop unfriendly. The main article or gallery always straddles the page because the top and right are either ads or more links. A simple way to display what I am really trying to read and occupy all the real estate I have with that content would really be appreciated even if I have to click twice to get to it... Thanks, MOlivero
As I glanced at the variety of Bill's tear-down galleries, a thought occurred to me that every IT tech has had at some point: "Sure, anyone can take things apart. But after that, can you put it back together and make it work again?" ;-)
What is that chip on the back of the card? Why two antenna connectors? This looks like much more than a "LTE 4G placeholder card". It looks like it could be a Bluetooth or WiFi card?
In fact, that's exactly the way we think. Bill has an amazing track record of getting stuff back together so that it works. In over 5 years of doing teardowns, I can only remember two times that Bill didn't get things back together in working order. This is one of our goals with every product that we crack open.
Bill has commented that this device would be very easy to service and repair. It uses standard screws and quickly comes apart.
It may have a chip to appear on the PCI/PCIe bus as a registered device. This would give them an easy way to detect the presence of a card, rather than probing for the future replacement and waiting for a timeout. The antenna connections are likely there to keep the antenna cables from going anywhere. It's tight in there, and they wouldn't have to go far to touch something they're not supposed to. It also keeps them positioned appropriately for the expansion card, when it's available. It could have some immediate use, of course. But with the only chip being closer to the bus pins than the antenna, I would doubt it. Proper PCB layout and design principles would suggest that the radio be as close as possible to the antenna connectors. I think. I'm no RF engineer. The above is all just a guess. Have a grain of salt.