Microsoft Surface Pro 9: improved repairability, but still annoying opacity according to iFixit

Good news for Microsoft PC enthusiasts. The Surface Pro 9, the manufacturer’s iconic tablet PC announced just a month ago, has been one of the most repairable computers in the range for a long time. iFixit, a site specializing in the disassembly and repair of electronic accessories, has even called it a “Most repairable surface in years”.

A little glue and some screws

In a video posted on November 10, 2022, its specialists point to the many improvements made by Microsoft in the construction of the Surface Pro 9. The SSD is housed behind the kickstand and can be changed with a single screwdriver. A good idea borrowed from the Surface Pro X released in 2019, but the new Surface Pro obviously goes further.

Unlike previous generations which have regularly inherited catastrophic iFixit ratings, the Pro 9 allows many of its components to be replaced without too much trouble. The biggest change is in the screen. With a heat gun and a suction cup, it is possible to lift the slab from the Surface relatively easily. A major upgrade from the Surface Pro 7 that iFixit called “glue monster”.

Repairability index still absent

Once the screen is removed, most components are accessible with a few screws. Want to change the battery? Only 10 small screws hold it in place. Replace the motherboard? Disconnect two or three cables, arm yourself with a Torx screwdriver and go. These improvements allow the Surface to inherit a score of 7/10 delivered by iFixit. Why not more? Yes, all is not entirely rosy at Microsoft.

If the Surface Pro 9 screen is easier to remove than that of its predecessors, you will have to be careful not to break it during the disassembly phase. iFixit also notes that Microsoft does not yet provide wide access to spare parts or a teardown guide for its devices. A recurring criticism addressed to the firm’s PCs, evidenced by the catastrophic scores from which most Microsoft PCs inherit on this point in the French repairability index.

Ditto, Microsoft has a bad habit of hiding the repairability score of its laptops, and the Surface Pro 9 seems to be no exception. The index cannot be found on most online sales sites. Selling repairable computers is good, providing spare parts to repair them is better. And being transparent on the subject would be appreciable.

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