The bill of materials (BOM) for the iPad 2 has been revealed, with the second generation tablet managing to keep costs close to that of its predecessor, and coming at under the cost of competing Android tablet, the Motorola Xoom.
According to the breakdown by IHS iSuppli, the NAND flash memory version of the iPad 2 with GSM/HSPA has a total cost of $326.60, while the CDMA version has a BOM of $323.25, which compares rather favourably to the $320 estimated costs for Apple’s first tablet, with the small rise helping create the slim profile of the new offering.
Even with manufacturing cost included, rising to $336.60 and $333.25 for the GSM/HSPA and CDMA version respectively, the costs have not moved significantly – largely due to changes being tweaks to existing hardware, with component and vendor selection similar to the iPad 1.
Meanwhile the Xoom is thought to have cost $359.92 according to a similar teardown by IHS iSuppli recently.
“Despite the obvious changes to iPad like the enclosure and the battery, and the less obvious changes in the touch screen, the iPad 2’s components and design are remarkably similar if not the same as those of the iPad 1,” said Andrew Rassweiler senior director and principal analyst and teardown services manager for IHS iSuppli.
“The iPad 1 and iPad 2 use the same components and suppliers for the NAND flash, the multi-touch controllers and touch screen drivers, as well as the same core chip in the wireless section as was found in the iPhone 4.
“Many of the other components—including the apps processor and the Bluetooth/frequency/global positioning system/wireless local area network chips—have the same suppliers and are essentially new revisions of the chips found in the previous iPad and other iPhones.”
One of the areas which has seen costs rise is with the touchscreen, though the LG display has remained the same.
The touchscreen is now thought to cost $127, a leap from the $95 for the orginal iPad according to the results of the teardown, which is mainly attributable to low production yields throughout 2010 – meaning higher prices.
The more slimline Gorilla glass cover has pushed costs up, as well more expensive glue being used with greater detail now demanded in the touchscreen inspection process.
The cost of the new A5 processor is another notable area where costs have risen, with the more powerful processor bumping the price up by 75 percent, though it is expected that this will fall significantly over the next year as production ramps up.
Camera costs were not highlighted however.
The improvements seen with the battery have also added to the increase in material costs, with the new $25 ultrathin three cell version offering improved performance over the $21 two cell battery powering the iPad 1.