updated 09:40 am EDT, Tue July 3, 2007
iSuppli iPhone teardown
A new teardown of the iPhone has been published, this time by the research firm iSuppli. While many of the components were previously identified in a Portelligent analysis, the iSuppli approach differs in several respects. Foremost is the estimation of cost; whereas Portelligent calculated a cost of $220 for an 8GB phone, iSuppli has determined that the cost is approximately $265, reducing margins to just over 55 percent. The group notes, however, that these figures still do not factor in elements like royalties and logistics.
Also observed is that Infineon is among the "biggest winners" in terms of electronics supplied. The company is providing several pieces of circuitry, including the digital baseband, radio-frequency transceiver and power-management devices, amounting to about $15 of the total manufacturing price. By contrast, the product's single National Semiconductor chip is worth just $1.50. One of the most substantial costs is the touchscreen display, made in tandem by Balda and TPK Holding of China, who are charging $27 for each module.
Samsung is the ultimate winner, since it is making the applications processor, as well as the DRAM and NAND flash memory. While the 4GB phone has $24 of NAND, the 8GB model has $48, and in each case 1GB of DDR SDRAM costs $14. Overall, Samsung's materials extract over $76 from Apple, or roughly 30.5 percent of the total.
iSuppli believes that phone sales should be extremely strong for Apple: 4.5 million units by the end of 2007, to as many as 30 million by 2011, assuming the iPhone line continues intact. Along with this should come substantial benefits to any third parties involved.