updated 03:05 pm EDT, Thu October 11, 2007
iPod classic teardown
Market research firm iSuppli has torn down Apple's new iPod classic, saying that the device has taken a backward-looking approach to personal media player functionality as well as technology. "While the rest of the iPod line has migrated to solid-state flash memory, the new iPod classic continues to employ venerable Hard-Disk Drive (HDD) technology for storage," the company wrote. "Furthermore, the iPod classic lacks some of the other advanced features found in the other new iPods, namely wireless capability and a touch screen." Apple can offer the iPod classic at a lower price than the its predecessor with increased capacity, but iSuppli says the dated features suggest "stopgap" measures that will likely limit the classic's life span and success in the market.
Apple's total bill of materials (BOM) for the iPod classic is quoted at $127 per unit, and the device sells for $250 (80GB) or $350 (160GB).
The teardown shows material costs of this year's third quarter of 2007, listing the hard drive at $78 as by far the most expensive component. The iPod classic's display ($11.90), core processor ($8.60), and DRAM ($5.80) follow as the most costly parts. Given the iPod classic's competitive storage capacity, combined with the highest battery life of all the company's iPods, power users may find this model a clear choice over the other flash-based designs.