iPhone 12 component costs $431 to build

The Global industry analysis firm, Counterpoint Research has made an estimate of the iPhone 12 component costs from the Bill of Materials (BOM) list. They estimate that the total cost for Apple’s new iPhone 12 is $431 which is a 26% increase from the iPhone 11.

The following breakdown provided by the company explains that 5G are a significant element and that the US models will cost more since they include mmWave 5G and why the increased cost:

  1. The materials include a 128 GB NAND flash, a 5G baseband display, and 5G RF components being the major reasons for the price increase.
  1. Apple likely pays TSMC $17 more for the A14 chip than it did for the A13 one. This new generation of A mobile processors, the A14 Bionic, have 11.8 billion transistors, providing an increased performance improvement in aspects regarding CPU, GPU, and Neural Engine. 
  1. Apple switched from LCD to OLED in the base model iPhone 12 is estimated to have an additional cost of $23 per unit.

Counterpoint Research thinks that Apple might make some savings elsewhere, by bringing more component suppliers and then reducing risks and allowing Apple to negotiate lower costs by playing one supplier against the other.

For example: For the iPhone 12, the memory orders are split between Samsung and KIOXIA (Toshiba) supplying NAND flash, and SK Hynix and Micron supplying LPDDR4X. On the camera, content shares are between Sony, LG Innotek, and Sharp. NXP and Broadcom continue providing solutions for wireless connection and display/touch control. Cirrus Logic, Goertek, Knowles, and AAC on audio design. TI and ST on power and battery management IC. 

Also, Apple expanded its cooperation with ASE/USI, leveraging the latter’s SiP (System in Package) packaging technology to make the design smaller.

The iPhone 12 component costs only cover materials. The price analysis does not include assembly, packaging, or distribution, and let’s not forget about the costs in research, development, and sales & marketing.

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