Amazon Kindle Fire: $199 to buy, $202 to make
Subsidised tablet's parts priced
Amazon's Kindle Fire e-book reader tablet costs more to manufacture than the online retailer is charging punters for it.
According to a take-apart conducted by market watcher iSuppli, the bits inside the Fire total $201.70. That comprises $185.60 for the parts, $16.10 for Amazon's contract manufacturer to put them all together.
Shipping the unit to buyers, the cost of coding Android to fit the hardware and to create the Fire's unique UI and marketing can only take the cost price of the Amazon tablet even higher above the $199 charges consumers for the device.
What Amazan can and does do is cover that difference out of the profit it will make selling content to Fire owners.
Breaking down the $185.60 parts cost, we see that the display and touchscreen assembly comes to $87, while the main PCB costs $64.45 - $22.10 for the memory, $14.65 for the Texas Instruments CPU, $4.50 for the Wi-Fi module and $23.20 for all the other chips, capacitors, diodes and such.
The battery costs $16.50, iSuppli estimates, with the plastic casing adding $14.40 to the total and the packaging a further $3.25.
There's no an awful lot more to the Fire's hardware than display, motherboard, battery and case, as iFixit's own teardown shows.
This reveals the presence of 8GB of Samsung Flash, 512MB of Hynix DDR 2 memory, a Jorjin Wi-Fi module and assorted power management, audio code and bus transceiver chippery from Texas Instruments. ®
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