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Teardown: 5s build costs at least $199, 5c $173
By Phil Dzikiy | 09.24.13

A teardown of Apple’s iPhone 5s and 5c by research firm IHS reveals just a few internal differences between the new phones. IHS estimates the 5s costs Apple between $199 to $218 for components and assembly — the lower cost for a 16GB model, and the higher cost for the 64GB model. The iPhone 5c is estimated to cost Apple $173 for the 16GB model, and $183 for the 32GB model. IHS analyst Andrew Rassweiler pointed out that Apple is “spending a lot of time and money combining RF chips,” which allows the phones to support more frequency bands. But internally, there aren’t too many differences between the 5c and 5s. “I would say that they’re almost the same phone, except that the 5s has the fingerprint sensor, the A7 processor and some newer memory chips that consume less power. Beyond that, they’re basically the same,” Rassweiler said. Though the report claims the phones have “the same cameras,” iLounge has found differences in areas like aperture, angle width and pixel size — the phones have a different flash, as well. [via AllThingsD]

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Every time I read one of these articles about how much it costs to build something I get infuriated. Could one of you “journalists” write an article that gives an accurate picture of what it REALLY costs to bring a product to market? (Sadly….iLounge is not alone in perpetuating these stories) All products, not just iPhones cost a lot more to “make” than just the cost of their parts.

By Rand on 09.24.13 at 01:16 PM

When you’re moving as many units as Apple is, effectively, the only cost is the sum of the parts.

They will move in the neighborhood of a hundred million or more of any particular iPhone over it’s 3 year lifespan. Even if it cost them 100 million to bring it to market (which you know it didn’t), that’s still only adding $1 to the cost.

By Code Monkey on 09.24.13 at 01:44 PM

The only cost is not the sum of the parts, but you are right, Code Monkey, over the long term, if these phones sell in the quantities Apple expects them to, the bill of materials will be the vast majority of the cost.

What I find amazing is the absolutely tiny cost of the Flash in these devices.  Only $19 for 48 GB!  This is absolutely bargain basement Flash, certainly, but it has to be higher quality than cheap usb flash drives, right?  So cheap.  I really hope that Apple lowers the cost of the higher capacity models with the iPhone 6.

By 0megapart!cle on 09.24.13 at 02:48 PM

$1???? Sorry, you’re wrong. Any idea how much tooling and test fixtures cost for production runs in the 100’s of millions? Its not cheap. And no….tools once made do not last for the entire production run. They have a limited life span. There is a whole slew of costs not accounted for here. THings like corporate op-ex. Yes….iPhones pay for toilet paper in the bathrooms in Cupertino. iPhone’s are also probably carrying some burden for other Apple products. There are royalties to be payed on things like…bluetooth, WiFi, cell technology. There are warranty and return costs burdened on every iPhone. I.E. every iPhone sold carries a cost burden for another iPhone that may fail. I could go on and on but to say its merely cost of goods is simplistic.

By Rand on 09.24.13 at 04:26 PM

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