iPhone vs Samsung Repair Cost

If you have a Samsung device and you have had the unfortunate experience of a broken screen you have probably wondered “why is a Samsung screen so expensive?”

In my seven years of repairing cell phones I have had customers ask me this questions hundreds of times. I have had customers that have inquired about the repair rudely scoff or even insult me for quoting a repair cost above $200.00 various times as well.

Samsung makes great devices and when compared to Apple it can be argued that you get more for your money when buying the device, but what should be factored into the pre-purchase cost analysis and ultimately the decision is the repair cost of the device you are contemplating.

Historically the brand new iPhone and the brand new Samsung will both have ridiculously expensive screen replacement costs immediately after the device hits the market. This high price is because of the simple concept of supply and demand. When the device is launched there is very little aftermarket support and very few suppliers that offer screens and if they do the availability is also few so this drives up the repair cost upwards of $500 Canadian. The difference between Samsung and Apple comes later as the months go by after the initial launch. Apple original screen supply increases over time and other manufactures in China develop and offer many new aftermarket replacement options which eventually floods the supply in the market, increases competition among competitors and finally drags the price downwards eventually close to $100 Canadian dollars. Samsung screens are manufactured in Korea. The screen supply is kept restricted and the secrets needed to produce Samsung’s OLED aftermarket versions are kept in secret, which prevents the entrance of other aftermarket manufactures. The problem that this then creates is a continuous low supply of replacement screens and therefor-high cost.

The next comments I get are “I only cracked the glass and my display works fine, why is it still so expensive to repair?” often said more aggressively or condescending, but you get the gist.  I cant blame people for this thought process since back when the good old iPhone 3 was ruling the world we had the option to simply unscrew the glass from the LCD and replace the much less costly glass while leaving the LCD. Nowadays our phones are made to be slim and sleek and in order to minimize the thickness of the devices they have fused together the glass and the LCD with optically clear adhesive.  So since they are glued together we replace the full assembly and this means that the cost goes up by the cost of the expensive LCD component of course.

Replacing the glass only is not impossible, in fact we have done it many times before since we purchased screen-refurbishing equipment that allows us to separate the broken glass, clean the LCD and laminate a new glass. The problem with this is that it is very difficult and labor intensive and it really doesn’t save much money. Secondly, the potential for issues with the LCD following the refurbishing process is much higher given that the separation involves heat and some force. The delicate LCD as you can imagine does not like heat or force. If a quick turnaround is not a concern for you then ask us about possibly having the glass only replacement done.

Another related comment that I hear is “I prefer Samsung because the screens don’t break as easy”. This is false. I do a lot less Samsung screen repairs yes, but that is because I quote the screen replacement and the customer will often be left with the choice of for example repairing the screen for $250.00 or buying another used device for the same cost or slightly more. iPhone repairs are always cost effective and make sense since they are well below the cost of replacing the device.

In short, Samsung may give you more bang for your buck considering its purchase price and features offered, but when considering repair cost in your pre-purchase decision the iPhone may be the better buy despite a pricey original purchase price.

For any questions or to inquire about your own repair please contact me by messenger found on my website (phone-doctor.ca) or by text or call at 6042175529.