Google's Nexus One smartphone, manufactured by HTC, costs approximately $174.15 to make, according to iSuppli. The research firm also noted that the Nexus One has a noise-cancellation processor it's never seen before, as well as a unibody design shared only by the iPhone.
The Nexus One, sold by Google but manufactured by HTC,
costs approximately $174.15 to make, according to a teardown performed by
iSuppli. That estimated bill of materials (BOM) tally is a conservative one,
the firm said in a Jan. 8 report, as it accounts for hardware and component
costs but not expenses such as "manufacturing, software, box contents,
accessories and royalties."
Google sells the Nexus One unlocked for $529, or with a two-year service
contract with T-Mobile for $179.
"With the Nexus One, Google has taken the most advanced features seen in
recent smartphone designs and wrapped them up into a single sleek design,"
wrote Kevin Keller, an analyst with iSuppli, in the report.
"Items like the durable unibody construction, the blazingly fast Snapdragon
baseband processor and the bright and sharp Active-Matrix Organic Light
Emitting Diode (AM-OLED) display all have been seen in previous phones, but
never before combined into a single design," Keller continued. "This gives the
Nexus One the most advanced features of any smartphone ever dissected by
iSuppli's Teardown Analysis Service-a remarkable feat given the product's BOM is
similar to comparable products introduced during the past year."
iSuppli has estimated a BOM of $172.46 for the Apple iPhone 3G S
BOM of $170.02 for the Palm Pre.
The most expensive item on the Nexus One's bill is its 1GHz Qualcomm
Snapdragon processor, which iSuppli estimates at $30.50. Qualcomm also supplies
the phone's power management technology and radio-frequency transceiver, each
estimated at a more modest $2.50 a pop. Combined, this gives Qualcomm 20.4
percent of the Google phone's BOM, making it the manufacturer to reap the
highest dollar revenue from the device.
According to iSuppli, it's money well-spent.
"The Snapdragon was first noted in a previous smartphone torn down by
iSuppli-the [Toshiba] TGO1 - which is based on [Microsoft's] Windows Mobile
operating system," wrote Keller. "However, the Android 2.1 operating system
used in the Nexus One better capitalizes on the Snapdragon's fast performance,
making the user interface and applications run very quickly. This processing
muscle also gives the Nexus One some advanced capabilities, most notably
high-definition 720p video playback."
The second most expensive bit on the Nexus One is perhaps its most
immediately noticeable feature, the 3.7-inch Samsung AMOLED display, which
costs $23.50. The Samsung Moment and Behold II also feature AMOLED displays,
which are said to offer crisper colors, wider viewing angles and, as iSuppli's
Keller added, a "stunning picture." The capacitive multitouch screen, from
Synaptics, is a separate $17.50.
The Nexus One's considerable memory-4G bits (512M bytes) of Samsung
double-data rate DRAM-is the third-ranking
item on the BOM, at $20.40.
Also notable, said iSuppli, is the Nexus One's audio voice processor chip,
from Audience Semiconductor, which helps to reduce background noise to the phone's dual
; it's the first part from this manufacturer that iSuppli has
Additionally, Nexus One's unibody design makes the device sturdier than one
with an enclosure comprising several pieces, but is more costly to manufacture.
"Besides [Apple's] iPhone, this marks the first unibody smartphone design
that iSuppli's teardown analyst team has noted," according to the report.
The iSuppli report added, "With the Nexus One, HTC
has taken a major cue from Apple in the enclosure design, making it the most
-Apple-like' product yet seen from any in the competition, and others are
likely to follow suit."