Samsung’s newly launched Gear wearable devices, including the Gear Fit smartwatch, will be very expensive to repair according to a new report from ZDNet Korea reports. The publication has learned that any malfunctioning or broken Gear wearables will have to be turned in for repairs, with users unable to simply order a replacement screen or component to fix a device themselves.
In addition to turning in the broken Gear wearable device, users will also have to pay a fee that’s almost equal to the original cost of the device when exchanging it. In Korea, buyers will have to pay 250,000 won (around $240,) to exchange a busted Gear 2 and 177,000 won (around $170) for the Gear Fit. For comparison, the full prices for these devices are at 360,000 and 247,000, respectively.
One of the major problems with these devices is the fact that their screens are glued to the body of the smartwatch, making repairs harder than expected. In its teardowns, iFixit gave the Gear Fit a 6/10 repairability score, with the Gear 2 getting a better 8/10 grade.
“The unibody design means any repairs require trucking through the display removal procedure first, risking damage to the LCD,” iFixit wrote about the Gear Fit, noting that users could replace the battery of the device and its watch band. However, to get to the innards of the device, users would have to go through the display, which requires melting adhesive and prying.
Furthermore, “low modularity—peripheral components (home switch, antenna, and vibrator motor) are soldered onto the main board and not individually replaceable without soldering,” iFixit says.
The company also said that the “fused display assembly, glued into the front of the [Gear 2] makes screen replacement a little difficult and costly.”