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Teardown Finds iPhone 5 Costs Apple About the Same As Did 4S

timothy posted more than 2 years ago | from the no-actual-new-elements-were-used dept.

Iphone 143

Nerval's Lobster writes "A physical teardown of the iPhone 5 by IHS iSuppli reveals that Apple has managed to keep its materials and manufacturing costs roughly in line with that of the iPhone 4S. The firm estimated the Bill of Materials for the iPhone 5's low-end variant at $199.00, rising to $207.00 once manufacturing costs are entered into the equation. It tallied the BOM for the 32GB version at $209.00 (or $217 with manufacturing) and the 64GB one at $230.00 (rising slightly to $238 with those manufacturing costs). Compare that to the BOM for the iPhone 4S, which IHS iSuppli estimated at $188 for the 16GB version (rising to $196 with manufacturing costs added in), $207 for the 32GB version ($215 with manufacturing) and $245 for the 64GB version ($254 with manufacturing)." Reader redkemper writes with another kind of comparison of the newest iPhone to its predecessor: "Apple didn't spend too much time talking about the iSight camera at the iPhone 5s unveil event because it's mostly the same as the one found in the iPhone 4S. Thankfully, iMore grabbed an iPhone 5 and iPhone 4S and did a fantastic shoot-out between the two device's rear cameras. [The new camera] just barely edges out the iPhone 4S's year-old camera."

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Well, (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41450215)

You'd have to actually change something to increase cost.

Re:Well, (0)

Mitreya (579078) | more than 2 years ago | (#41450389)

You'd have to actually change something to increase cost.

They could just change the markup :)

Why not charge $1000 per phone now?

Yeah like, (5, Insightful)

yabos (719499) | more than 2 years ago | (#41450753)

Bigger screen, faster CPU&GPU, more ram, new camera? Oh wait.. they did that.

Re:Yeah like, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41451539)

Oh really? How would you tell?

Re:Yeah like, (1)

tofubeer (1746800) | more than 2 years ago | (#41452155)

Bigger screen? I'd lay them out side by side and eyeball it.
Faster chips? I'd run the same apps side by side and wall time them, or I would use a benchmark tool (subject to gaming by companies though).
New camera? I'd take the a number of pictures with both and compare them,

Nothing too hard... how would you fail to tell?

Re:Yeah like, (2)

Grizzley9 (1407005) | about 2 years ago | (#41452381)

Bigger screen, faster CPU&GPU, more ram, new camera? Oh wait.. they did that.

As well as a complete redesign of the interior. iFixit report here on /. mentions how it's much more repairable than the 4/4s.

Re:Well, (5, Funny)

binarylarry (1338699) | more than 2 years ago | (#41450831)

Well this should, at least, show all the fandroids out there just how advanced the iPhone 4S was!

It was practically from the future!

Re:Well, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41451463)

weak

Re:Well, (5, Informative)

Plumpaquatsch (2701653) | more than 2 years ago | (#41451955)

You'd have to actually change something to increase cost.

http://arstechnica.com/apple/2012/09/iphone-5-deconstructed-packed-with-power-efficient-parts/ [arstechnica.com]

iFixit's usual thorough analysis reveals that nearly every hardware component has been upgraded or improved, yet is so power efficient that the battery capacity largely remains the same.

Spent less on mapping license didn't they? (2)

Glasswire (302197) | more than 2 years ago | (#41450233)

I assume Apple had been paying Google something for Google maps which was replaced by Apple maps. Depending how you wan to amortize the R&D, that was a unit BoM savings if Google has been getting a per unit fee.

Re:Spent less on mapping license didn't they? (2)

Glasswire (302197) | more than 2 years ago | (#41450267)

... Assuming software costs are included in the BoM, of course...

Re:Spent less on mapping license didn't they? (1)

alphatel (1450715) | more than 2 years ago | (#41450271)

What other costs are there for Apple? 300% markup on list price seems a bit drastic.

Re:Spent less on mapping license didn't they? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41450303)

What other costs are there for Apple? 300% markup on list price seems a bit drastic.

Not if people are dumb enough to pay it. They need their SHINY after all.

Nice gig for Apple though. There's not a company on this planet that wouldn't love a 300% markup for its flagship products.

Re:Spent less on mapping license didn't they? (3, Insightful)

Karlt1 (231423) | more than 2 years ago | (#41450791)

"Not if people are dumb enough to pay it. They need their SHINY after all. "

I keep seeing that, but the people don't pay more. The carriers pay more to Apple and subsidize more heavily, Tell me why should I care as long as I pay the same for the iPhone as any other comparable smart phone?

Re:Spent less on mapping license didn't they? (1)

Ravaldy (2621787) | more than 2 years ago | (#41451883)

yes maybe, but users still end up paying more. If you live in the city getting an Android phone will cost you at least $10 less a month on your bill.

As for the google charge for the maps, I assume that was on their plan revenu, not hardware sales.

Re:Spent less on mapping license didn't they? (1)

CannonballHead (842625) | about 2 years ago | (#41452629)

Recently...
iPhone 4 at Verizon store: $200.
iPhone 4s at Verizon store: $250, forget which
Galaxy S3 at Verizon store: $200
Who pays the same as any other comparable smartphone? Unless, of course, "comparable" means "same priced, regardless of technical differences" :)

Currently...
iPhone 5 16gb at verizonwireless.com: $200, $300 for 32gb
Galaxy S3 16gb at verizonwireless.com: $200, $250 for 32gb
So, Apple charges $100 for an additional 16gb. Samsung charges $50. $50 is pretty expensive even, IMO.

Re:Spent less on mapping license didn't they? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41450309)

alphatel meet Apple. Apple, meet alphatel's wallet.

Re:Spent less on mapping license didn't they? (4, Informative)

Thruen (753567) | more than 2 years ago | (#41450421)

Development, for starters. Apple's spent quite a bit of time developing both the hardware and software behind the iPhones, costs which naturally have to be covered, and free services like iCloud do cost money to maintain. Obviously Apple is making a boatload of money off the iPhone, and they should they are a business and their goal is to make money, but this is like saying Windows costs Microsoft a nickel to make because they just had to stamp a DVD.

Re:Spent less on mapping license didn't they? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41450857)

Development, for starters.

Which part in the iPhone 5 or iPhone 4(S) develop, for starters?

Apple does development ... (4, Informative)

perpenso (1613749) | more than 2 years ago | (#41451213)

Development, for starters.

Which part in the iPhone 5 or iPhone 4(S) develop, for starters?

For one, the CPU. From wiki:
"The A6 is said to use a 1.2 GHz[3][4][5] custom Apple-designed ARMv7 based dual core CPU,[1] rather than standard cores like in previous designs, and an integrated triple core SGX 543MP3[6] graphics processing unit (GPU) with the same performance as the previous Apple A5X processor found in the third-generation iPad. The SGX 543MP3 is running at 266MHz."

Software development has costs too. Even FOSS software has paid developers at times, the success of some FOSS projects has been tied to this fact.

Re:Spent less on mapping license didn't they? (1)

macs4all (973270) | more than 2 years ago | (#41451663)

this is like saying Windows costs Microsoft a nickel to make because they just had to stamp a DVD.

Precisely!

Re:Spent less on mapping license didn't they? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41450467)

What other costs are there for Apple? 300% markup on list price for Apple seems a bit low.

See, THOSE sentences parse. What you had made no logical sense. Imagine, an upper limit on how much Apple is willing to gouge their users. It's absurd!

Re:Spent less on mapping license didn't they? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41450521)

What other costs are there for Apple?

Patent lawyers

Re:Spent less on mapping license didn't they? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41452285)

What other costs are there for Apple?

Patent lawyers

Can't - prior art

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shark

Re:Spent less on mapping license didn't they? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41450901)

Usually a store doubles the price for a lot of items to cover costs on their end, but it does vary. The manufacturing cost seems really reasonable all things considered. The important thing is the price is set by what the consumer will bear not the actual cost to bring it to market. That is why the different models are priced by memory, but most definitely have different margins.

Hardware cost only. (3, Insightful)

mosb1000 (710161) | more than 2 years ago | (#41450961)

Obviously, Apple spent a lot of money on their new 3D global mapping system, which isn't included in this cost estimate. They've also spent money developing other aspects of the new version of iOS. And they spent money designing the new version of the phone, and it's updated hardware. Of course, they're going to sell so many of these it'll wipe out those costs pretty soon. Still, any new development is risky. Look at all the bad press they're getting over maps! If they have to pull it, it will be a complete loss. Contrary to popular belief, about half of the new products Apple releases are actually flops. But a flop costs as much to develop as a success. Fortunately, Apple is able to charge enough of a markup on their successful products to make up the difference.

Re:Hardware cost only. (1)

macs4all (973270) | more than 2 years ago | (#41451733)

Obviously, Apple spent a lot of money on their new 3D global mapping system, which isn't included in this cost estimate. They've also spent money developing other aspects of the new version of iOS. And they spent money designing the new version of the phone, and it's updated hardware. Of course, they're going to sell so many of these it'll wipe out those costs pretty soon. Still, any new development is risky. Look at all the bad press they're getting over maps! If they have to pull it, it will be a complete loss. Contrary to popular belief, about half of the new products Apple releases are actually flops. But a flop costs as much to develop as a success. Fortunately, Apple is able to charge enough of a markup on their successful products to make up the difference.

I'd put that figure at closer to 10-25% "flop rate" these days; but otherwise, I agree completely with your comments.

Re:Spent less on mapping license didn't they? (4, Insightful)

macs4all (973270) | more than 2 years ago | (#41451645)

What other costs are there for Apple? 300% markup on list price seems a bit drastic.

No. A 3X markup from raw material and assembly costs to MSRP, up through distribution channels, is actually about right.

Too bad Slashdot doesn't have any readers who have experience in the real world; or they'd realize that those "markups" are very realistic, when all you are considering is the BOM costs.

Are people really so stupid that they don't realize that there are a LOT of other costs other than just the raw materials and CM (Contract Manufacturing) fees?

Go do a BOM cost on your average $700 TV, or $400 A/V Receiver, or perhaps another Smartphone. You'll soon see what I mean. And CARS.... Talk about Mark-up... OMG!

Re:Spent less on mapping license didn't they? (5, Insightful)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 2 years ago | (#41451701)

No, 300% markup on a BOM is pretty bog standard on an electronics device.

Get over it guys, the world isn't designed to give you your toys as cheaply as possible. That's what your parents were for.

Re:Spent less on mapping license didn't they? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41451753)

Oh, there's only R&D, the design team, iOS, x-platform iTunes, packaging, shipping, random licensing (including to MAFIAA cos) and being able to strike deals by buying up supply of components years ahead of time...

Seems to cost more to roll your own... (2)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 2 years ago | (#41450359)

Depending how you wan to amortize the R&D, that was a unit BoM savings if Google has been getting a per unit fee.

Possibly, but overall Apple is paying a lot more to built out a mapping solution of their own compared to just using Google's. The cost of that would not be figured into the raw hardware calculations iSupply is doing...

I don't think in the end it is a savings.

Re:Seems to cost more to roll your own... (1)

macs4all (973270) | more than 2 years ago | (#41451803)

Depending how you wan to amortize the R&D, that was a unit BoM savings if Google has been getting a per unit fee.

Possibly, but overall Apple is paying a lot more to built out a mapping solution of their own compared to just using Google's. The cost of that would not be figured into the raw hardware calculations iSupply is doing...

I don't think in the end it is a savings.

Not only build-out; but maintain in perpetuity. iSupply is (as usual) just talking out their ass. Not to mention that they have absolutely zero way to establish a "landed cost" for the custom silicon, or for the custom display/touch interface. It's nothing more than click-bait, as per usual.

Re:Spent less on mapping license didn't they? (1)

Plumpaquatsch (2701653) | more than 2 years ago | (#41452125)

I assume Apple had been paying Google something for Google maps which was replaced by Apple maps. Depending how you wan to amortize the R&D, that was a unit BoM savings if Google has been getting a per unit fee.

Yeah, because Apple's solution, the rights to the map data, etc. just appeared out of nowhere without cost. And that's ignoring that it's part of iOS 6, not of the iPhone 5.

Here's a tip: if you think you have a great post to make - think again before writing it. If you want to go for first post, don't try to make a clever post - you'll fail at both.

Camera (4, Insightful)

sureshot007 (1406703) | more than 2 years ago | (#41450317)

You don't need a high quality camera if all you do is post crappy instagram pics.

Re:Camera (2, Insightful)

Hentes (2461350) | more than 2 years ago | (#41451003)

Phone cameras are not high quality. Resolution doesn't matter much if your lens system is shit.

Re:Camera (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41451093)

Precisely. I love how the link in the article takes it to a photo comparison of iPhone 5 and Canon 3D Mark and tries to pretend that two photos are even remotely close in quality. That's I guess if you don't count warped buildings and curved roads caused by incredible fish eye effect of the lousy camera iPhone 5.

Re:Camera (2)

spire3661 (1038968) | more than 2 years ago | (#41451393)

The best camera is the one you have with you. And to be fair, iphone 4S produces images that would make my Sony Floppy-based digicam weep.

Re:Camera (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 2 years ago | (#41451781)

The best camera is the one you have with you. And to be fair, iphone 4S produces images that would make my Sony Floppy-based digicam weep.

You still have a Floppy-based Sony? Do you work for a museum? IIRC those things were 640 x 480 x 256 colors. You can get those kind of cameras in cereal boxes.

Re:Camera (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41451915)

You can get those kind of cameras in cereal boxes.

No you can't - there wouldn't be any room left for cereal!

Re:Camera (4, Insightful)

macs4all (973270) | more than 2 years ago | (#41451923)

The best camera is the one you have with you. And to be fair, iphone 4S produces images that would make my Sony Floppy-based digicam weep.

Nice Ansel Adams quote (IIRC); and you are precisely correct. Anyone who thinks that any lens system than can fit into a phone will be the equal of any lens on a DSLR simply doesn't understand how physics works.

But ya know, it's all about "capturing the moment". And these smartphone cameras are all about that. Which would you rather have: That priceless photo of a loved one that is now gone, but with a little spherical aberration near the edge; or nothing but a fading memory in your brain?

PureView (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41451421)

http://www.nokia.com/global/products/pureview/

Re:Camera (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | more than 2 years ago | (#41451679)

Not that having high quality matters for great photography, other than to fools who believe that lots of dollars are a substitute to basic skills and an experienced eye. No amount of megapixels will substitute for the lack of those.

Re:Camera (1)

the_humeister (922869) | more than 2 years ago | (#41452209)

Hmmm... [youtube.com] (it was funnier before the iPhone 5's debut).

Re:Camera (3, Informative)

Plumpaquatsch (2701653) | more than 2 years ago | (#41452325)

Yawn. First of all, lets link to the original article [imore.com] instead of the BGR rumination.

"However, if you want a thinner phone that still takes great photos, if you want a better screen that gives a more accurate representation of your photos, if you want the ability to take photos while shooting video, then taken together, the answer could very well change to yes. In fact, if taking and enjoying photos with your iPhone is one of your primary passions -- if you consider yourself an "iPhoneographer" -- the display alone is worth the upgrade to the iPhone 5."

Oh, and how about the motto of the photo blog http://www.imore.com/photography [imore.com] : "Everything you need to know to take the best pictures imaginable with the iPhone, the best camera you have with you".

Re:Camera (1)

sureshot007 (1406703) | about 2 years ago | (#41452395)

"Everything you need to know to take the best pictures imaginable with the iPhone, the best camera you have with you".

It's easy for it to be the "best camera you have with you" when it's the only camera you have with you...

all flagship phones cost about this much (2)

alen (225700) | more than 2 years ago | (#41450347)

i read these and almost every flagship from from every manufacturer is in the $180 to $200 range. Apple's bill of materials tends to be a little higher most times but their margins are also higher because they make one phone for all around the world. iphone 5 and LTE is an exception with different models supporting different frequencies around the world

Re:all flagship phones cost about this much (1, Offtopic)

gnasher719 (869701) | more than 2 years ago | (#41451509)

i read these and almost every flagship from from every manufacturer is in the $180 to $200 range. Apple's bill of materials tends to be a little higher most times but their margins are also higher because they make one phone for all around the world. iphone 5 and LTE is an exception with different models supporting different frequencies around the world

And what all these children don't seem to realise is that the $180 to $200 Bill of Materials gives you a bag full of parts somewhere in a container near a manufacturing plant in China. If they saw the Bill of Materials for a pair of shoes, or some jeans, or a hamburger at McDonald's, they would faint.

Re:all flagship phones cost about this much (0)

macs4all (973270) | more than 2 years ago | (#41451973)

i read these and almost every flagship from from every manufacturer is in the $180 to $200 range. Apple's bill of materials tends to be a little higher most times but their margins are also higher because they make one phone for all around the world. iphone 5 and LTE is an exception with different models supporting different frequencies around the world

And what all these children don't seem to realise is that the $180 to $200 Bill of Materials gives you a bag full of parts somewhere in a container near a manufacturing plant in China. If they saw the Bill of Materials for a pair of shoes, or some jeans, or a hamburger at McDonald's, they would faint.

...or any other smartphone, or their new $700 TV, or $400 stereo receiver, or just about anything.

OMG The product cost more than the Sum of Parts (3, Insightful)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 2 years ago | (#41450371)

How horrible that someone sells a product that cost more than the sum of their part!

We shouldn't have to pay for those millions in R&D and those failed designed they were working on.
We shouldn't have to pay for the salary of the employees at apple.
Heck those guys at Foxconn get next to nothing anyways... Why not go to the next logical step and have them work for free.

Unfortunately running a business you find that things are more expensive than the normal consumer realizes.

Re:OMG The product cost more than the Sum of Parts (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41450475)

And then there's the fact that you charge what the market will pay anyway, regardless of all these other factors. Cost-plus pricing is dead.

Re:OMG The product cost more than the Sum of Parts (2)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 2 years ago | (#41450845)

Dead? It never really existed. Cost+ is your limit. If the market rate is below your Cost+ then you are going to need to change your business.

If they sold under the well below market price, there will be a run to buy them. Then once there is a shortage people will then sell them at the market rate.
If they sold them well above market price, less people will buy them, and the stores will be overstocked. Causing them to sell at a discount (close to the market rate) to get them off their shelves. So they can put items that move faster there.

Why do Gold and Gems have been historically so valuable. If they were cost+ they would be fairly cheap to buy, but because there is smaller supply of them they are more valuable.

Re:OMG The product cost more than the Sum of Parts (1)

petermgreen (876956) | more than 2 years ago | (#41451669)

With raw materials the price does tend towards a cost but the cost it tends towards is the cost of the marginal supply, not the cost of the average supply (and yes this does mean that those who control supplies that are much cheaper to deal with than the marginal supply can get very rich).

Re:OMG The product cost more than the Sum of Parts (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41450495)

I don't think anyone thinks there aren't other costs involved aside from the cost of the raw/processed materials.

What I do think people go OMG about is the comparrison between Apple's BoM/RRP and there competitors figures.

Re:OMG The product cost more than the Sum of Parts (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41450569)

I blame global warming and Wall Street.

Re:OMG The product cost more than the Sum of Parts (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41450605)

Either way, they are running a business and people are going to buy the product. If people buy it, they are in business and are in it well.

Re:OMG The product cost more than the Sum of Parts (1)

Hentes (2461350) | more than 2 years ago | (#41451077)

If that's what you got from an article investigating a change in manufacturing costs then you really are jumping at everything.

Re:OMG The product cost more than the Sum of Parts (2)

SandwhichMaster (1044184) | more than 2 years ago | (#41451307)

How horrible that someone sells a product that cost more than the sum of their part!

It's not that someone is making a profit. It's that all of the major phone companies are working together to make phone prices ridiculous. Without contract, you're looking at: $649/16gb, $749/32gb, $849/64gb.

That is one hell of a mark up.

I guarantee that people would be rushing to stores a little slower if it weren't for the 2 year contract "discount". It seems a little fishy that all of the major phone releases have similar pricing and, generally speaking, the phones are locked to one provider. It reeks of collusion.

Re:OMG The product cost more than the Sum of Parts (1)

BitZtream (692029) | about 2 years ago | (#41453047)

300% markup over BOM cost is pretty much the STANDARD MARKUP for every product on the planet. BoM doesn't include advertising, assembly, delivery, warehousing, Point of Sale costs and millions of other little things that end up driving the cost up.

If you think handing someone a bag of parts (thats what the BoM is, just the cost of the bag of parts) is anything like an assembled finished product sitting on a store shelf then you have absolutely no concept of how the real world works.

Re:OMG The product cost more than the Sum of Parts (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41451671)

yes, but greed is greed.

8$ (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41450425)

8$ of the total cost of a iphone (or any other phone for that matter) is labor cost (probably not all of it). That's...overwhelming. This has to stop someday. There's no way you can compete with this.

Re:8$ (3, Insightful)

Sparticus789 (2625955) | more than 2 years ago | (#41450591)

That's why their factories are in the middle-of-nowhere China. The real ironic part is the same people who buy Apple products are the same people who complain about Wal-Mart not offering a "fair wage" to their employees.

It's more than labor costs now. (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41450863)

The most iPhone manufacturing "ecosystem" is now in China. It's not just moving Foxconn's operatoins over here, it's moving their suppliers and the suppliers of the suppliers and so on.

Also it's the way the Chinese do business. Here's the story that was told in the business press a while ago ....

When Apple was looking for folks to make their phones at the very beginning, one of their reps went back to China and saw this factory being built. When the factory manager was asked, "What's going on over there?" He responded, "That's just in case we get your business."

Apple hired them.

No American company in their right mind would build an entire new plant "just in case".

Flash forward and now the entire manufacturing chain is over there.

And it's happening to more and more industries. You just can't pick everything up and move it.

Gradually we're going to be a country of people cleaning the bedpans of the other people and finance our lifestyle with debt and asset sales - see Greece.

Chinese gov't built Foxconn plant ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41451345)

When Apple was looking for folks to make their phones at the very beginning, one of their reps went back to China and saw this factory being built. When the factory manager was asked, "What's going on over there?" He responded, "That's just in case we get your business." Apple hired them. No American company in their right mind would build an entire new plant "just in case".

No Chinese company would do so either. The Foxconn plant you are referring to was built by the Chinese government, not by Foxconn. The government was going to have somebody build something there, it just turned out to be Apple.

This is a good example of the subsidies the Chinese government provides companies. Its not just a disparity of wages, its the government providing a company with an old fashioned "company town" complex too.

Re:8$ (2)

LynnwoodRooster (966895) | more than 2 years ago | (#41451187)

Guangdong province (where the vast majority of Foxconn's factories are located) has about 35 million people, within a 2 hour drive of Hong Kong. If that's middle-of-nowhere China then Anaheim is middle-of-nowhere US.

Re:8$ (1)

Sparticus789 (2625955) | more than 2 years ago | (#41451493)

Population density in Guangdong province is 1,390 /sq mi . Let's compare to some other US cities:
Anaheim, CA - 6,600/sq mi (Guangdong is not Anaheim, CA)
San Jose, CA - 5,400/sq mi

So Guangdong is 3 times less densely populated than Anaheim California. You could compare the province to Santa Clara County (1,400/sq m), which has the San Jose metro area within it. However there are places like Gilroy, Morgan Hill, Henry Coe State Park, and other largely uninhabited areas of the county. Just look at a map, or be someone who grew up in the San Jose area (me)

Re:8$ (1)

sexconker (1179573) | more than 2 years ago | (#41451337)

That's why their factories are in the middle-of-nowhere China. The real ironic part is the same people who buy Apple products are the same people who complain about Wal-Mart not offering a "fair wage" to their employees.

That's not ironic, it's coincidental!

The use of words expressing something other than their literal intention. Now that, is, Irony!

Re:8$ (1)

BitZtream (692029) | about 2 years ago | (#41453117)

Its trivial to compete with those costs, ask any major manufacture on the planet with a robotic assembly line.

Ask car manufactures who only pay more than that because of unions.

This is way manufacturing leaves America, because people like you have no concept of how cheaply something can be done and why you would never pay the ridiculous unionized wages demanded by American manufacturing workers.

Go on to top it off that those people in china are HAPPY TO HAVE INCOME AT ALL. They don't pay the same ridiculous prices you pay in america, land of the supersize me.

The problem is not that it only costs $8 in china. The problem is that you think its worth more than that.

$240 to make and $800 asking price? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41450477)

So where does the "27% margin" come from?

Engineering income for tax purposes ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41451403)

Re:$240 to make and $800 asking price? So where does the "27% margin" come from?

Its the result of carefully engineering the supply chain and accounting so that the bulk of the profits are recognized by the foreign subsidiary in a different non-U.S. tax jurisdiction. That 27% is based on what the subsidiary "charges" the U.S. based headquarters for the product/parts.

iMore comparison (5, Informative)

mpicker0 (411333) | more than 2 years ago | (#41450497)

iMore grabbed an iPhone 5 and iPhone 4S and did a fantastic shoot-out between the two device's rear cameras.

Here's a link to the actual comparison, instead of a blog describing the comparison: http://www.imore.com/iphone-5-vs-iphone-4s-camera [imore.com]

Re:iMore comparison (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41451091)

Is it just me or does the chick have bigger boobs in the iPhone 5 pic?

Re:iMore comparison (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41451353)

It's Apple magic at work. Or breast pads.

Re:iMore comparison (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41451757)

What a worthless review.

"Here, lets compare these pictures side by side, but I'm only going to provide you with less than .5 MP versions of the original 8 MP images, and then I'm going to make them even smaller when embedding them in this page."

Re:iMore comparison (1)

gutnor (872759) | about 2 years ago | (#41453209)

That is hardly a comparison, btw. None of the image are in full resolution and there are no sample at 1:1 to compare. I know that phones are not supposed to be used for "real photography", but damn, I expect a minimum more than a thumbnail comparison from a so called "App and Photography Editor at iMore".

Otherwise here is my review. I also don't think the camera is worth replacing your 1 year old phone. I have read the spec and seen a few picture on the net, trust me.

Apple came out with a 5s? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41450559)

"Apple didn't spend too much time talking about the iSight camera at the iPhone 5s unveil event because it's mostly the same as the one found in the iPhone 4S."

What? May I see it? I bet Safari is snappier...

Breaking News... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41450637)

Slashdot taken over by Apple shills.

Re:Breaking News... (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 2 years ago | (#41450773)

The people who hate Apple are posting a bunch, too. Slashdot, being an ad-supported site, wins either way.

Re:Breaking News... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41451095)

A bunch of articles?

Re:Breaking News... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#41452377)

The people who hate Apple are posting a bunch, too. Slashdot, being an ad-supported site, wins either way.

Yes, but I'm talking about the articles that find there way here...not the comment posts.
Six months ago, you would have never seen this much bias.

Re:Breaking News... (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | about 2 years ago | (#41452651)

First off, yes you would have. It's been a complaint around here since well before the iPad came out. Even sites like Gizmodo and Engadget have features to turn off stories in the weeks approaching Apple releases.

Second, the comments breed the stories. Lots of people comment (love or hate) when Apple stories come up, Slashdot serves ads, we get more stories.

Re:Breaking News... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41451725)

We wanted to give you Google shills a fair shake but it turns out you're too retarded to actually do anything correctly.

Moving to aluminum may have been a bad idea (1, Interesting)

jmichaelg (148257) | more than 2 years ago | (#41450643)

I read that when Jobs was testing the first iphone prototype, the screen was plastic because it was thought to resist fracturing when dropped. After a few times in his pocket getting scuffed up by his keys, he told the team to replace the plastic with glass which eventually led to Apple using Gorilla Glass. He didn't give a damn how expensive or inconvenient the transition was going to be, an easily scratched face wasn't going on the iphone. Though the backing was scratchable, it was made of stainless steel which meant minor scratches could be buffed out if the owner cared to.

Given Ifixit's 30 second test [youtube.com] showing how scuff-prone the new aluminum backing is, it's hard to imagine Jobs having greenlit this particular design choice.

Re:Moving to aluminum may have been a bad idea (1)

RyuuzakiTetsuya (195424) | more than 2 years ago | (#41450871)

As a long time, as many here would say, iSheep, yes. Steve Jobs green lit a lot of really bad design choices.

Por ejemplo. [slashdot.org]

The iPhone 4 was shatter prone too.

Re:Moving to aluminum may have been a bad idea (2)

Anubis IV (1279820) | more than 2 years ago | (#41450935)

Blaming things on "this isn't how Jobs would've done it" is getting a bit old now. He wasn't perfect. He had plenty of bad ideas and even let several of them ship over the years (e.g. putting the vents for the G4 Cube on top of the machine, overdoing it with skeuomorphisms, wanting to name the iMac the MacMan [fastcodesign.com] , and I haven't even gotten into things like Antennagate and the like). And especially so in this case, since Apple has had a long history of shipping out aluminum-clad devices with anodized colors. I recall hearing or reading something that I believe Jony Ive said about how as things wear they want for them to wear well, much like good leather will as it takes damage and gets scuffed. That is, things will be scratched up, but the trick they were using was to use materials that would wear that damage well (e.g. the original iPhone that you mentioned). Minor scuffs and dings may detract from how pristine their devices look, but it may still be in keeping with their design philosophies, though I do agree that this device seems a bit more susceptible to injury than I would think they would like.

Side note: Wired had an interested article about Gorilla Glass [wired.com] yesterday, and it's worth a read if you find that stuff fascinating at all.

Re:Moving to aluminum may have been a bad idea (1)

jandrese (485) | more than 2 years ago | (#41451459)

putting the vents for the G4 Cube on top of the machine

How was this a bad idea? The problem with the Cube wasn't that the vents were on top, it was that Apple was trying to passively cool a fairly hot PowerPC processor. A small fan in the design might have saved it, except that Apple priced it way too high for the market segment that might have been interested in it and saw only tepid sales as a result.

In fact this could even be a prime example of why sticking the vents on the top is a good idea. It was nearly enough to cool a power hogging G4 processor with no fan and smallish heat sink. Conventional cases with front-to-back cooling are wasting energy doing work that convection would do for them if they had a bottom-to-top airflow.

Re:Moving to aluminum may have been a bad idea (2)

Anubis IV (1279820) | more than 2 years ago | (#41451903)

The reason why the vents on the top were problematic was because the flat surface of the top invited people to place objects on the Cube, resulting in the only means of ventilation becoming obstructed. It became a major issue, with numerous G4 Cubes overheating and suffering various problems. Yes, it's a bit of a stupid user moment, but the fact that the design didn't accommodate such an obvious issue was the result of poor planning on Apple's part. Using convection cooling was a good idea, but the vents could have been placed in a number of alternative ways in order to provide more redundancy against this issue (e.g. slits along the top edge on the sides of the device).

And while it seemed overpriced, for what you got, it really wasn't at the time, though the return on that investment was lower than on other models with similar specs. It's full name was the Power Mac G4 Cube, and it really was a Power Mac crammed into that plastic cube, with all the power that came with it at that time. That said, people who bought Power Macs had little use for a device that couldn't be upgraded easily, so while its price was appropriate for the configuration it came with, its lack of expansion capability made it a poor return on the investment for the pro-level market. In many ways, it would be like them making a pro-level iMac today, which, while possibly being great at the time of release, would not maintain its value sufficiently enough to justify the cost of the more powerful components.

Re:Moving to aluminum may have been a bad idea (1)

Misagon (1135) | more than 2 years ago | (#41452001)

Anodized aluminium - "aluma" - is actually a quite hard material. It is harder than aluminium itself.

The issue here, is that the outer layer of aluma just appears to be quite thin on the iPhone 5. If the parameters of the anodizing process had been just a little bit different, they could have made the layer thicker, and therefore more scuff-resistant.

Another thing they could have done would have been to round off the sharp beveled edges. That appears to be the part that is most easily scuffed.

Re:Moving to aluminum may have been a bad idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41452145)

it's hard to imagine Jobs having greenlit this particular design choice.

Really, how can you be sure? Jobs was in charge of other easily scratched products, e.g.:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IPod_Nano#Reception

He also called the hockey puck mouse the "best mouse ever made", despite widely being seen as one of Apple's worst design mistakes:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apple_USB_Mouse

Re:Moving to aluminum may have been a bad idea (1)

gutnor (872759) | about 2 years ago | (#41452821)

The only piece of stainless steel the iPhone ever had was the antenna of the iPhone 4/4S and I think the screen border of iPhone 3G/3GS. For the 3 first years the back of the iPhone was in plastic. The aluminium back is only easy to scratch compared to the glass back of version 4 and 4G. You could scratch the back of all 3 iPhones generation before with little effort.

Man, how rubbish was that video was by the way. If those 30 seconds are supposed to simulate "2 weeks of solid use", you need a ruggedized cheap phone and not a $600 phone. And it is not a question of brand there, it just happen that the iPhone 4 was special with regards to scratches compared to basically everything else. Its design was very critized for being too fragile though, compared to basically everything else - at least for the same people that would consider the video a fair representation of a few weeks of use.

People remember fondly but really the first generation of iPhone was a pain to keep scratch free. It was also one the first phone that OCD afflicted people took an interest in. Before 2007, nobody seemed to care about scratches - at worst you would buy those polishing compound when the screen was unreadable.

So, is Apple evil now? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41450655)

???

Re:So, is Apple evil now? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41450691)

If Romney or Bush did this, it would be evil, but if Apple does this, it's Obama-k00l.

Re:So, is Apple evil now? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41450819)

You confuse great with being good. Apple has always been evil, but great. /tongueincheek

Re:So, is Apple evil now? (2)

An ominous Cow art (320322) | more than 2 years ago | (#41451629)

Apple: Someone set us up the BOM !!

iPhone 5 notably better in low light (5, Informative)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 2 years ago | (#41451315)

Other reviews have noted that while the iPhone 5 camera is just a little better in normal light, it's much better in low light according to this review shooting in Iceland [austinmann.com] .

From other tests I seen, it seems to be about two stops better at high ISO shooting. Lower noise and clearer images.

That article is weird. (1)

gnasher719 (869701) | more than 2 years ago | (#41451407)

So he says the iPhone 5 camera is "barely better" than the one in the iPhone 4S. Then in the article he says "But, if youâ(TM)re still not convinced that the iPhone 5 isnâ(TM)t quite a DSLR-replacer just yet, take a look at it compared to a Canon 5D Mark III. That ought to change your mind." Unless he is confused by too many "not"s in one sentence, that seems to say that the camera isn't very good compared to a professional camera. But to quote from the linked article: "The results are pretty amazing â" the iPhone takes worse photos but it certainly stacks up against a $4,000 professional camera. ". In other words, the camera in a $600 phone is not quite as good as a $4,000 professional camera, but it is not far away.

article fails to answer one key question (1, Funny)

WhiteDragon (4556) | more than 2 years ago | (#41451569)

Will it blend?

news flash: iSuppli's BOMs are deliberately low (1)

bushing (20804) | more than 2 years ago | (#41451837)

iSuppli's business model revolves around finding you low prices for components (for a nice, hefty fee, of course) for your next big consumer electronics product; these teardowns are just advertising for that service. In order to pull customers in, they mark down the lowest plausible price for each component; it's unlikely that even Apple can get these low prices for each component.

Practially every teardown they show is low-balled, because there's no way to verify any of these numbers, and lower numbers gets them more contracting business.

Re:news flash: iSuppli's BOMs are deliberately low (1)

bored (40072) | about 2 years ago | (#41453039)

I doubt it, when your apple and your buying the entire supply of something you get quite a nice price break.

Anyway, I would be curious to see them do some price comparisons with those $20 DVD players at walmart, or the $99 kids tablet/netbooks at toys R US, or the $200 netbooks at frys. Or for that matter the $50 capacitive screen tablets that are everywhere. Basically devices that don't have some big company subsidizing them to gain further sales.

Margin? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#41452117)

You are easily led to think that the $207 is Apple's cost per phone. It's not.
It's the hardware cost (and most probably a low estimate as noted before).

Add to that all the licenses that Apple needs, FRAND and others (although some of these may be included in complete hardware components), software cost, hardware R&D, etc.
It will add up to a lot more.

I also object to the $8 "manufacturing" cost. Assembly cost would be more accurate since many of the parts, like the machined body parts, also include labor costs.

Of course it does (0)

TheSkepticalOptimist (898384) | about 2 years ago | (#41452917)

Its obvious Apple cut corners on the quality of materials used to make the iPhone 5 (scuff marks), the quality of construction of the iPhone 5 (light leaks and damage on arrival), and the quality of the software that is included in iPhone 5.

Also there are already component supply shortages because Apple moved away from using Samsung and instead finding cheaper competitors. And obviously nothing has improved over in China given the riots which suggests Apple hasn't improved the pay or quality of work conditions over there..

Apple is their own worse enemy. It won't be any one competitor that takes down Apple, it will be Apple rolling out a fiasco that will take them down. Something like what the iPhone 5 is amounting too.

What is hilarious is the excuses both Apple and its fan boys are using to defend what is amounting to one of the worst product roll outs Apple has offered in recent history.

The truth is that had Steve Job's been alive he would have been fuming of this disaster. Heads would be rolling at Apple today. He would never have allowed release of a new Map product that did not surpass the quality of the product it replaced, he would never have allowed the leaks of all the information about the iPhone including photos of the actual case months in advance, and he never would have allowed a product to be released that scratched if you blew too hard on it, not after the first few generations of iPods with flawed easily scratched materials.

It is very obvious that Apple peaked the moment Jobs died. To claim the iPhone 5 is the last of his legacy, the last product he was intimately involved in suggests that today's Apple has no respect for the man that made that company.

Tim Cook and Jonathan Ives should be both be fired. There are way too many people wanting iPhone 5 to be more then it is, but it really is just a disaster that few want to admit is possible.

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