Samsung appears to be moving up the cost spectrum with the Galaxy S5.
Samsung’s latest handset costs $256 to manufacture, which is $30 more than last year’s Galaxy S4. A teardown analysis by market research firm IHS revealed that the cost of manufacturing for Samsung has been rising steadily over the course of the year.
“Our main takeaway is that Samsung has been moved up to the higher end of the cost spectrum. It used to be that its typical flagship phone sold for $600 without a contract and had a bill of materials of about $200. Now they’re inching up above $250 regularly,” read the report.
Andrew Rassweiler, an analyst at IHS that led the teardown said that other than the dust and water resistant features, there isn’t anything on the Galaxy S5 that is extraordinary. He went on to add that a lot of the internal components have been recycled and that there was “nothing special inside where Samsung is pushing the envelope.”
The costliest component on the device is the five-inch full-HD display, which cost the manufacturer $63. The DRAM and flash memory came in at $33, the cost of which gets circulated back into Samsung as the manufacturer used its own hardware. The cost of the Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 was not mentioned, although going be earlier estimates, it would be in the vicinity of $30.
Rassweiler also stated that the fingerprint sensor used in the Galaxy S5 was more affordable at $4 than the one used in the iPhone 5S, which cost $15. In addition to an accelerometer, a gyroscope and a compass, the Galaxy S5 comes with a biosensor, which adds $1.45 to the cost of the device. The biosensor is manufactured by Maxim Integrated Products, who also provided the power management hardware for the device.
Overall, it looks like Samsung is making less than what it did with the Galaxy S4. The Galaxy S4 cost around $230 and was retailing for over $750. The Galaxy S5 on the other hand costs more to manufacture and is available for around $700 unlocked.