Bringing Retina display to iPad mini could add 30% to total parts cost

Posted:
in iPad edited January 2014
With Apple rumored to be working on a next-generation iPad mini with Retina display, some market watchers estimate that adding the high-resolution panel to the 7.9-inch tablet could raise total parts costs by up to 30 percent.

iPad mini Teardown
Source: IHS iSuppli


According to commentary from DigiTimes, Apple's inclusion of a Retina display suitable for the iPad mini would raise the product's overall bill of materials by more than $12, bringing the overall tally to above $200 per unit. While the publication has been hit-or-miss with Apple hardware rumors in the past, its track record with display-centric reports has been fairly accurate.

If Apple adopts the Retina display, not only will the cost of the panel increase, but other parts as well, including an upgraded LED backlight to compensate for the increased pixel density. All told, the Retina display is estimated to raise the iPad mini's BOM by more than 30 percent.

Research firm IHS iSuppli in November conducted a teardown of the then-new iPad mini and estimated the 7.9-inch tablet's innards to cost Apple $188. Without factoring in labor costs, the low-end 16GB Wi-Fi only model is yielding 43 percent profit margins on the high end, with the 32GB and 64GB versions bringing in margins of up to 52 percent and 56 percent, respectively.

Of the components, the iPad mini's screen was the most expensive item at $80, representing about 43 percent of the total BOM. Costs for the panel are likely to have decreased due to increased production ramp.

It is unclear if Apple will raise the price of the iPad mini if and when the company decides to release a Retina display model, though when an identical spec bump came to the 9.7-inch iPad, consumer cost remain unchanged.

The publication goes on to say that the global market is looking to move 180-240 million 7-inch form factor tablets in 2013, accounting for 45-60 percent of total shipments.
«1

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 40


    Assumed, mythical number to increase (maybe) should assumed (presently mythical) parts exist.

  • Reply 2 of 40
    dunksdunks Posts: 1,232member
    Which is precisely why it won't happen in 2013.

    The iPad mini is supposed to be an upsell from budget android tablets.

    Adding a retina display to the mini at this point will remove the distinguishing feature that makes people pay more for a full-sized iPad.

    I predict they will keep the mini more or less as is and use manifacturing ramp to drop the price while maintaining margin. The US$329 starting price is just too weird to not have been purposely within striking distance of US$299. An iPad for $300 is huge news.

    Based on the backplate leak We already know Apple are working hard to make the iPad 5 more like the mini - specifically addressing the most common complaints about the full size iPad: heavy, thick and cumbersome.

    Apple owns the centre of the market. It's fairly clear that their focus has to be on stopping encroachment by competitors at the bottom and top ends of the market. They can only do this by spreading out, not contracting, their price points.


    7" Droids <--cheaper iPad mini <-- more compact iPad | iPad 128GB--> Microsoft Surface/Ultrabooks
  • Reply 3 of 40


    30% extra cost for 100% more pixels. I'll buy.

  • Reply 4 of 40
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    I still think 2014 is most likely for that thickness and weight with the current iPad mini being the maximum allowed but I sure it hope it arrives this year.

    Assumed, mythical number to increase (maybe) should assumed (presently mythical) parts exist.

    ...and that previous mythical numbers are accurate.
  • Reply 5 of 40

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Dunks View Post



    Which is precisely why it won't happen in 2013


     


    It can still happen by charging $399 instead of $329 for the retina iPad mini. The current iPad mini will become $299, while the normal iPad 5 will be starting $499. 


     


    I don't think AAPL can afford to sit there doing nothing major when others are producing 5" 1080p smartphones .... 

  • Reply 6 of 40
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    30% extra cost for 100% more pixels. I'll buy.

    100% higher resolution = 300% more pixels.
  • Reply 7 of 40
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,360member


    I bet that most of the people who were whining about the iPad Mini not being retina are probably going to complain about the price, if Apple releases a retina iPad Mini which costs slightly more, and these very same people will just invent some new excuse to not get a Mini when the iPad Mini retina gets released, if it ever does get released.


     


    As for me, I just bought a non-retina iPad Mini last week, and I do not want retina on my iPad Mini. Why in the world wouldn't I want retina?


     


    Well, there are a few reasons.


     


    One, I already have a retina iPad 3, so that takes care of my retina needs when I need it.


     


    Two, one of the things that I like about the iPad Mini is that it's so damn light. I like both my iPad 3 and iPad Mini, but picking up and using an iPad 3 after using the iPad Mini for a while, feels like you're picking up a huge brick. The weight difference is considerable, and I don't want a heavier iPad Mini.


     


    Three, I don't want a slightly thicker iPad Mini either.


     


    Four, I don't want any less battery life than what I get on the iPad Mini now. The iPad 3 did have slightly less battery life than the iPad 2, especially the newer version of the iPad 2, with the new CPU chip.

  • Reply 8 of 40

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post





    100% higher resolution = 300% more pixels.


    Oops, yer right

  • Reply 9 of 40


    You may not want th extra heat coming from the mini too.  I have both iPad form factor.  I prefer the iPad because of a larger screen for home use.  I like the mini just the way it is.  Its size is just perfect for people to carry around.  If Apple adds the cell phone capability, that if add with a bluetooth headset can run over the Galaxy Note. 


     


     


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Apple ][ View Post


    I bet that most of the people who were whining about the iPad Mini not being retina are probably going to complain about the price, if Apple releases a retina iPad Mini which costs slightly more, and these very same people will just invent some new excuse to not get a Mini when the iPad Mini retina gets released, if it ever does get released.


     


    As for me, I just bought a non-retina iPad Mini last week, and I do not want retina on my iPad Mini. Why in the world wouldn't I want retina?


     


    Well, there are a few reasons.


     


    One, I already have a retina iPad 3, so that takes care of my retina needs when I need it.


     


    Two, one of the things that I like about the iPad Mini is that it's so damn light. I like both my iPad 3 and iPad Mini, but picking up and using an iPad 3 after using the iPad Mini for a while, feels like you're picking up a huge brick. The weight difference is considerable, and I don't want a heavier iPad Mini.


     


    Three, I don't want a slightly thicker iPad Mini either.


     


    Four, I don't want any less battery life than what I get on the iPad Mini now. The iPad 3 did have slightly less battery life than the iPad 2, especially the newer version of the iPad 2, with the new CPU chip.


  • Reply 10 of 40
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member


    Hmm...I think it would be a bad idea to increase the price on a retina mini.  When the 3rd gen iPad was released they didn't raise the price over iPad 2, they just continued selling the iPad 2 at a lower price.  I don't think Apple should release a retina mini unless/until they can keep it thin and light with amazing battery life and keep the price at $329.  I don't get why a retina display would have to increase the price anyway.  There are competitor tablets that are cheaper than the mini that have better displays.

  • Reply 11 of 40

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by drobforever View Post


     


    It can still happen by charging $399 instead of $329 for the retina iPad mini. The current iPad mini will become $299, while the normal iPad 5 will be starting $499. 


     


    I don't think AAPL can afford to sit there doing nothing major when others are producing 5" 1080p smartphones .... 



    I agree completely.  Your pricing speculation makes perfect sense.

  • Reply 12 of 40
    dunksdunks Posts: 1,232member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by drobforever View Post


     


    It can still happen by charging $399 instead of $329 for the retina iPad mini. The current iPad mini will become $299, while the normal iPad 5 will be starting $499. 


     


    I don't think AAPL can afford to sit there doing nothing major when others are producing 5" 1080p smartphones .... 



     


    Actually if they keep a non-retina mini around it could work:


     


    7" Droids <-- cheaper iPad mini |  iPad mini w/ retina --> <-- more compact iPad | iPad 128GB --> Microsoft Surface/Ultrabooks

  • Reply 13 of 40
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,360member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by rsdofny View Post


    You may not want th extra heat coming from the mini too.  I have both iPad form factor.  I prefer the iPad because of a larger screen for home use.  I like the mini just the way it is.  Its size is just perfect for people to carry around.  If Apple adds the cell phone capability, that if add with a bluetooth headset can run over the Galaxy Note. 


     


     



    True, a retina device will generate more heat than a non retina device. Before I had an iPad 3, I had an iPad 2, and the iPad 3 definitely gets warmer when under load. 


     


    I think that a retina display is great and it definitely has advantages, but that great screen also comes with a few compromises, compared to the non-retina versions. I guess that it all depends on what somebody is looking for and for what purpose and where they intend to use their tablet.

  • Reply 14 of 40
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,360member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post


    There are competitor tablets that are cheaper than the mini that have better displays.



     


    Are those the same competitors that sell their tablets at cost or even at a loss?


     


    From an investor's point of view, I don't want Apple releasing a retina iPad Mini for the same price, because we all know what's going to happen. Apple is going to get slammed by all of the talking heads and other clueless people on Wall Street, since their margins will be decreasing yet again.

  • Reply 15 of 40
    Just today I was in a local Apple store talking with an employee about this...first time I have held an iPad mini and iPad 3 side by side to compare pixels...I have to say, if no new iPad mini with retina is available by April, I can see me living with the current mini. It looks pretty damn good even not being retina.
  • Reply 16 of 40
    I would bet Apple to offer both, regular and retina iPad mini
  • Reply 17 of 40
    dunksdunks Posts: 1,232member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post


    There are competitor tablets that are cheaper than the mini that have better displays.



     


    Apple wins here on the quality of the ecosystem. The App Store offers a critical nexus of ease of use, peace of mind, and broad selection that competitors aren't keeping pace with.

  • Reply 18 of 40
    wizard69wizard69 Posts: 12,672member


    Baloney


     


    Has anyone stopped to consider that iPad Minis high price might be the result of Apple looking ahead and trying to set a price to cover retina when it comes out?    In otherwords Apple has already set a price to cover retina without a price change when it is actually released.    


    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Dunks View Post



    Which is precisely why it won't happen in 2013.



    The iPad mini is supposed to be an upsell from budget android tablets.



    Adding a retina display to the mini at this point will remove the distinguishing feature that makes people pay more for a full-sized iPad.



    I predict they will keep the mini more or less as is and use manifacturing ramp to drop the price while maintaining margin. The US$329 starting price is just too weird to not have been purposely within striking distance of US$299. An iPad for $300 is huge news.



    Based on the backplate leak We already know Apple are working hard to make the iPad 5 more like the mini - specifically addressing the most common complaints about the full size iPad: heavy, thick and cumbersome.



    Apple owns the centre of the market. It's fairly clear that their focus has to be on stopping encroachment by competitors at the bottom and top ends of the market. They can only do this by spreading out, not contracting, their price points.





    7" Droids <--cheaper iPad mini <-- more compact iPad | iPad 128GB--> Microsoft Surface/Ultrabooks

  • Reply 19 of 40
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,360member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by allenbf View Post



    It looks pretty damn good even not being retina.


    It does indeed. And I'm used to retina, but I don't mind using an iPad Mini at all, since it has other advantages. I haven't done much reading on the Mini yet, but I've used it for a few games and some Netflix and it looks pretty good to me. 


     


    Just to prove my point, both of my iPads were not being used a few minutes ago, and my girlfriend went to get one to use, and guess which one she picked up? Hint: It wasn't the retina iPad 3.image

  • Reply 20 of 40
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,360member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Dunks View Post


     


    Apple wins here on the quality of the ecosystem. The App Store offers a critical nexus of ease of use, peace of mind, and broad selection that competitors aren't keeping pace with.



    Also, it depends what he means by "better displays". A 16:9 display for a tablet is a non-starter as far as I'm concerned. They're horrible. I don't care if they were 4k displays, 16:9 is not good for a tablet, and is really awkward to use in portrait. iPads are meant to be used however you want to, either landscape or portrait.

Sign In or Register to comment.