Apple's new iPad is predictably selling like hotcakes, but margins look to be slimmer than for previous models, if a teardown analysis is accurate.
The US vendor sold three million units since the device went on sale in eleven markets on Friday. This is a first-weekend record for the device, says Philip Schiller, Apple’s senior vice president of worldwide marketing, and tops the previous iPad’s opening weekend by two million devices, according to a Reuters report from the time.
However, a teardown analysis by IHS iSuppli reveals Apple’s margins are lower on the iPad 3 than for previous models. The firm estimates that the latest mid-range 32GB WiFi and LTE model has a bill of materials (BOM) of $364.35 (€275.72), some 9% higher than the BOM for the comparable iPad 2 model. Both devices retailed at $729 at launch.
The base 16GB, Wi-Fi only, model has a BOM of $306.05, compared to the iPad 2's BOM of $236.95. The most expensive 64GB Wi-Fi and LTE version has a BOM of $397.95, and a retail price of $829.00.
According to IHS, one of the main factors driving up costs for the third-generation version is the introduction of the 2048x1536 resolution screen, which has added $30 to $87 to the cost per unit.
Apple's bitter rival, Samsung, is still the biggest winner in terms of supplying parts for the new iPad. IHS estimates that Samsung has a 30.2% share of the BOM for the 32GB LTE version, and that in models where Samsung also provided the NAND Flash, its share rises to nearly 40%.
In other iPad news, some early adopters have been reporting problems with their new iPads overheating, to the extent they become uncomfortable to hold.