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3G iPhone really costs $173?


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Back on June 16, IGM reported that Portelligent generated a "bill of materials" (BOM) indicating the parts inside the 3G iPhone cost $100.

Today, quoting numbers generated by iSuppli, BusinessWeek reports that the 8GB 3G iPhone costs Apple about $173 each to make. The first version of the iPhone was initially said to cost $220 to make, though that figure has since been revised to $226.

"They have done a good job in using what worked well with the first one and making improvements where it mattered," says iSuppli analyst Jagdish Rebello, who also revealed that Apple pays about $45 in licensing fees per handset.

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Apple's per-unit profit on an 8GB iPhone works out to about $281, or about 56%, which is inline with the company's margin on original versions of the handset.

It's widely believed that AT&T will subsidize a big chunk of the price of each phone--an estimated $499 for each device. AT&T hopes to make up for the expense through monthly service packages.

In the US, the 8GB 3G iPhone will set buyers back $199 initially and then $70 per month on a two-year contract.

Editor's note: Apple's cut the cost of the handset despite adding 3G and GPS.

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