Opinion | MSI should really remove the 'Factory Seal' sticker from some of its laptops
One of the best characteristics of most gaming laptops is their ease of serviceability. Adding RAM or storage to a Dell Alienware 15, MSI GT63, or Razer Blade Pro is generally a straightforward process. These OEMs have designed many of their gaming laptops with easily removable bottom plates so end-users can upgrade on their own if desired.
Out of the hundreds of gaming laptops we've reviewed, however, one particular OEM has had a habit of discouraging end-user tinkering. Almost every MSI laptop comes with a "Factory Seal" sticker on the bottom plate covering one of the Philips screws. If all you want to do is add a stick of RAM or storage drive, then you will have to break this sticker which could potentially impact your manufacturer warranty.
We understand the reasoning for including the anti-tamper sticker as it deters nefarious users from swapping out certain parts. But when you're one of the only OEMs to have this particular sticker, then it might also deter legitimate users who simply want to upgrade their RAM or storage. If a buyer is on the fence between an MSI GE63 or Asus Zephyrus M, for example, then he or she may choose the latter because Asus laptops are far less likely to have any anti-tamper stickers. It's a double-edged sword for MSI in this respect.
The sticker on the bottom plate leaves a sour taste in the user's mouth especially for gamers who are more likely to upgrade their gaming laptops down the line. However, we think there is a solution to this; MSI could instead put the anti-tamper sticker directly on the heat sink to deter tampering of the processors. Owners would then be free to upgrade their storage or memory without fear of voiding the included warranty because no stickers would be in the way.
For what it's worth, MSI has told us that owners can break the sticker seal to upgrade RAM or storage without impacting warranty, but let us know in the comments below if you've had a different experience.