Cracking Open the Samsung Galaxy MegaBill Detwiler cracks open the Galaxy Mega and shows you why this monster phone isn't just an oversized Galaxy S4.
Samsung's Galaxy Mega may look like an oversized version of the S4, but is it? Well, no. As I'm going to show you, looks can be deceiving. I'm Bill Detwiler and this is Cracking Open. Nearly 3-1/2 inches wide and over 6-1/2 inches tall, the Galaxy Mega is a monster of a phone or a small tablet or a phablet, whatever. Now, luckily, like the S4 and most Samsung phones and tablets I have cracked open, disassembling the mega is relatively easy and it doesn't require any special tools. Just a Phillips triple zero screwdriver and maybe a thin blade. Now, thanks to a user-replaceable battery, the back cover pops off with just a fingernail. After removing several Phillips screws, you can remove the lower speaker assembly and then the circuit board cover with a fan tool or again your fingernail. The Mega's overall internal design is similar to the S4. The main board is located at the top and a smaller board at the bottom. Now, after detaching the lower board's connectors, it can be removed and after removing a single screw and detaching its connectors, the main board and rear camera come out. The last few components to be removed are the headphone jack, ear piece, speaker and sensor assembly and the front-facing camera. Like the S4, the Mega's front panel display and internal frame are fused together. If one part breaks, you'll likely need to replace the whole assembly. So, this is where our teardown ends. Now, if the Mega is so similar to the S4 in appearance and overall construction, why did I see its looks were deceiving? Well, it all comes down to hardware. The S4 has a quad-core processor, 2 gigs of RAM, a 13-megapixel camera and a screen resolution of 1920 by 1080. The Mega is a step behind with a dual-core processor, 1.5 gigs of RAM and 8-megapixel camera and 1280 by 720 screen resolution. The only component that's actually bigger is the battery but then again, the Mega's larger screen likely necessitates the bigger battery. So, why would you want a device that's really too large to be a phone, in my opinion, and has hardware that's let's than cutting edge? Well twice. At release, the Mega is $149 compared to the S4 which is still $199. Although, some careers offer slightly better deals. And even when Samsung releases the Galaxy Note 3, which will likely have much better hardware, it will likely cost around $300. So, if you're in the market for a mid-range phablet, the Mega is worth a look. For more information on the Galaxy Mega including real world test and pricing information, check out Jessica Dolcourt's full CNET review. And to see more teardown photos and read my full hardware analysis, go to techrepublic.com/crackingopen. I'm Bill Detwiler, thanks for watching.