Samsung Galaxy S9+ costs more to build than Note 8, slightly less than iPhone X

High-end smartphones are getting pricier, gimmickier, faster, sharper, more technologically complex and, naturally, costlier to build. Even profit margin champion Apple spent significantly more on putting together last year’s iPhone X than all of the family’s previous generations, which explains the jump to a $999 and up MSRP that many found prohibitive.

As always, Samsung seems to be settling for a considerably slimmer flagship margin than its arch-rival, investing an estimated $379 into the making of each Galaxy S9+ unit that’s then sold at a starting unlocked price of $840.

The iPhone X is only 10 bucks or so more expensive to produce, according to information available to TechInsights “at the time” of the face-scanning handset’s “initial teardown.” Meanwhile, it’s definitely worth highlighting that the Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus carries a $10 higher bill of materials than the Note 8, which in turn continues to command a higher recommended retail price.

The global smartphone market-leading Korean company clearly spared no expense in the camera department, where the S9+ tops its predecessor by a whopping $16, as well as the iPhone X by $5, at a total cost of $48.

Unsurprisingly, the most expensive GS9+ component is its cutting-edge display, at $72.50, although the OLED beaut is described as a “carryover from the Galaxy S8+ with minor changes”, which actually makes it cheaper to manufacture these days.

Other interesting tidbits include a massive increase of the “volatile” memory, aka RAM, investment from the S8 Plus, and a huge difference in “non-electronics” parts expenses between the Galaxy S9+ and iPhone X attributed to “Apple’s approach to their housings, with a heavy emphasis on machining.”

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About The Author
Adrian Diaconescu
Adrian has had an insatiable passion for writing since he was in school and found himself writing philosophical essays about the meaning of life and the differences between light and dark beer. Later, he realized this was pretty much his only marketable skill, so he first created a personal blog (in Romanian) and then discovered his true calling, which is writing about all things tech (in English).