Third Party DIY Nexus 10 Internal Battery Replace & Review
Apologies in advance, I could not post proper links for this review due to my low post count
I ordered a Nexus 10 on November 20th, 2012. Initially, I was pleased by the battery life (~6.5 hours). Probably a bit like the "Boiling Frog" metaphor, the battery life degraded and I didn't notice it. I began to notice the battery degradation recently when my tablet began doing the 0% battery shutdown at ~30%.
First thing I did was get on the phone with Google, to see if I could get them to warranty the battery. Being a couple of months out of warranty, I wasn't expecting it to work, but it couldn't hurt. Denied. So, I called Samsung. After two hours and 8 different technical support phone numbers, they couldn't recognize my tablet serial number. I'm guessing it was unrecognized (which is no excuse, by the way) because I bought it on the Google Play Store. Besides all that, they didn't recognize the product name, kept calling it strange stuff like Nexus 10.1 or Nexus Note. They told me they would research and return my call at a later time.
My Nexus 10 is a daily driver with a minimum of 3 hours of use a day and often over 6. After
waiting a few days, I began to panic. I began to believe that I had paid ~$500 for a device that, after a few more cells died, was going to be an expensive brick. I did some research and could find NO reviews on the NewPower99 battery kit, and since I felt that my options were relatively few, I decided to take the plunge.
Kit Contents and Cost
Ordered from Amazon for $75.41 (shipping and taxes included)
1 Cameron Sino 9000 mAh 33.3Wh Lithium-Polymer Battery Pack
One tiny screw screwdriver
Two tiny plastic prying tools
One plastic video disk (Not sure what it does, they special players can spin it fast and a video will play(!!??))
The Replacement and Pitfalls
Rather than using the included plastic video disk, I searched YouTube until I found the video: NewPower99 by NewLife2OldStuff. It's a great primer for this battery replacement, but there are a few parts where the disassembler's
fingers get in the way of disconnecting connectors. I suggest watching a few other Nexus 10 teardown videos prior to the actual teardown.
Prior to this, I had not attempted any mobile device disassembly/assembly. I did break a little insulation on the video card connector on the main board but this is due to me only watching the NewPower99 video and missing a detail (pull the display cable rather than flip the connector). Also due to how delicate the internals are, I did not push the display connector in far enough, which led to the display power being spotty. So, I had to redisassemble the tablet a few days later and reconnect it. Had I done more research and been a bit more patient, I'm sure the replacement would have been flawless.
My tablet has not yet exploded. As a matter of fact, one week in, I'm amazed. I've fell back in love with my tablet. Since the battery replacement, I usually don't need
to charge until the end of the day. I run a conservative brightness on the display and, of course, that helps. Also, while I've done no metrics, I believe I've seen an unintended improvement: the charge time has improved. It was not unusual for me to plugin during sleep and still not have a full charge in the morning, which I haven't seen happen since battery replacement.
At a later time, I intend to respond to this post with an unscientific update on the battery's life. If the battery life stays relatively the same, I wouldn't really mind yearly replacement at this battery's warranty limitation and probably expected minimum life. Small price to pay for great battery life and a very underrated tablet.
Also, Samsung did, finally, return my support call a few days ago but I never called back. Don't call me, I'll call you