The parts in the Galaxy S20 Ultra cost less than half its retail price, analysis reveals

The parts in the Galaxy S20 Ultra cost less than half its retail price, analysis reveals
The Galaxy S20 Ultra launches today alongside the S20 and S20+ but if you’re following tech news you might get the impression that Samsung only made one S20 model this year. For the past few weeks, everyone has been raving about the S20 Ultra and its overkill specs, barely mentioning the other two S20 phones.

One thing that people never fail to mention when talking about the Galaxy S20 Ultra is its price. If it wasn’t for Samsung’s foldable phones, the Ultra would have been by far the company’s most expensive phone starting at $1,400.

But are you getting your money’s worth of hardware or is the high price mostly “premium tax”? Well, to answer exactly that question, TechInsights disassembled the Galaxy S20 Ultra to its core components and then tallied up the price of the components they found inside.

The result, as you can see above, is a grand total of $528.50 for all the parts and the assembly of the unit. That’s about 38% of the $1,400 price of the device. But we’ll get back to that later, now let’s see which elements are contributing the most.

The three big-ticket items on the list won’t surprise anyone. The 6.9-inch display comes at $67 (far from how much you’d have to pay to get it replaced), followed by the Snapdragon 865 chip at $81 and the most expensive component is the camera assembly with a price tag of $107.50. If anything, we’re surprised that massive camera module doesn’t cost more, it’s what the phone is all about.

Okay, so is the price of the S20 Ultra fair or is Samsung looking to make extra profit on the back of Space Zoom? Well, for comparison, TechInsights’ teardown of the 512GB version of the iPhone 11 Pro Max (retailing for $1,449) showed that the parts inside cost approximately $490.

It seems, then, that the Ultra is priced in line with other premium phones. But don’t think that Samsung is pocketing $870 for every Galaxy S20 Ultra it sells. Besides profits, that has to cover Research & Development, marketing, licensing fees and countless other expenses.

Just like when you get your coffee at Starbucks, you’re not only paying for the liquid and the cup, you’re also paying a fraction of the location’s rent, the barista’s salary and so on.

Now, that doesn’t mean that premium phones like Samsung’s S-series and Apple’s iPhones don’t have high profit margins. That’s just how things are at that level. If you’re looking for the best value for your money, you can always get a cheaper phone, there are plenty of good ones at any price range.

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