Teardown puts iPhone 4 hardware cost at US$187

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Teardown puts iPhone 4 hardware cost at US$187

iSuppli estimate has component costs rising slightly.

Though hardware costs forthe iPhone 4 have risen slightly, Apple is still expected to make a strong profit on the handset.

Analyst firm iSuppli said its most recent teardown assessment placed the cost of the 16GB iPhone 4 hardware components at US$187.51 (AU$216.06). Last year's iPhone3G S model carried an estimated bill of materials (BOM) cost of US$170.80 (AU$196.83 at today's exchange rate).

Of the four iPhone models, the iPhone 3G carried the smallest BOM costs with $166.31. The original iPhone was the most expensive, carrying a $217.73 cost.

Analysts believe the costs will be close enough that the company will secure strong profits on the handset.

"Just as it did with the iPad, Apple has thrown away the electronics playbook with the iPhone 4, reaching new heights in terms of industrial design, electronics integration and user interface," said iSuppli principal teardown analyst Kevin Keller.

"With the iPhone maintaining its existing pricing, Apple will be able to maintain the prodigious margins that have allowed it to build up a colossal cash reserve."

The most expensive component in the 16GB model is Apple's new Retina touchscreen display. Analysts estimate that each screen costs the company approximately US$28.50 (AU$32.85), just over 15 percent of total hardware costs. Following closely is the 16GB of flash memory at US$27.00 (AU$31.11).

Other costs include US$13.80 (AU$15.90) for SDRAM, $11.72 (AU$13.50) for baseband antenna hardware and US$10.75 (AU$12.38) for the handset's CPU.

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