A teardown and analysis of the iPhone XS Max with 256GB storage by TechInsights points to the total component cost coming in at $443. The display was the most expensive component of the lot at $80.50.
The A12 chip and the new Gigabit LTE modem came in second at $72. The A12 Bionic chip is among the first in the world to be fabricated by TSMC on the 7nm process which is why it is so expensive. It features an 8-core neural engine, a 4-core Apple designed GPU, and a 6-core CPU featuring two high-performance cores and four power-efficient cores.
Despite the jump in display size to 6.5-inches, the iPhone XS Max display has turned out to be only 3.23$ more expensive for Apple — $80.50 vs $77.27 — when compared to the 5.8-inch OLED panel of the iPhone X. Apple managed to reduce the overall price of the OLED panel for the iPhone XS Max by removing some of the 3D Touch components that were previously found on the iPhone X. This helped the company reduce the display cost by up to $10 per panel.
The housing cost for the iPhone XS Max has also increased substantially when compared to the iPhone X – $58 vs $45.71. This is due to the internal frame being bigger, heavier, and carrying “more process costs around spot welds, inserts, etc.”
Overall, the total component cost of the iPhone XS Max is $50 more than the 64GB iPhone X ($395.44). Apple charges $1,249 for the 256GB iPhone XS Max in the United States.
The component price shared by Tech Insights is only an estimate and does not take into account the billions of dollars that Apple spends on R&D and software development every year. And being an estimate, they only give an idea of the total component cost inside a smartphone and are not entirely accurate. So it is best not to judge the pricing of the new iPhones based on this component cost breakdown.
Just for comparison, the iPhone 4 component costs were estimated at $187.51 — almost 2.3x times lower than that of the iPhone XS Max.
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