It's like clockwork: every new mainstream gadget inevitably finds its guts torn asunder as part of an in-depth teardown. Nintendo's latest home console is no exception, with iFixit today opening up the Wii U for all to see. There's little to report in the way of surprises, though. We mentioned the console's size and heft in our review, a result of Nintendo taking a relaxed approach to the Wii U's internal design. In direct contrast to other manufacturers — who increasingly utilize every centimeter of available space in a quest to shrink devices — the Wii U contains plenty of unused component space. Accounting for an entire third of the Wii U's overall weight is the 424-gram (0.935 pounds) optical drive.
Nintendo has also differentiated itself from competitors in a good way: the Wii U attains an impressive 8 out of 10 on iFixit's repairability scale. Primarily that's because none of the system's components are held in place by adhesive. The same holds true for the the GamePad's display, so do-it-yourself screen replacements aren't entirely out of the question. That's welcome news considering Nintendo isn't yet selling the GamePad as a standalone accessory. Similarly, the GamePad's much-maligned battery is easily replaceable — potentially making room for aftermarket alternatives with improved longevity. For an up-close look at all of the Wii U's internals, follow the link to iFixit below.