SINGAPORE - It costs Apple about US$275 (S$350) to make a 16GB WiFi-only iPad Air 2, according to a material-cost estimate by analysts who performed a teardown of Apple's latest tablet.
IHS, a market information and analytics company, said in a press statement on Wednesday that the preliminary estimate of the bill of materials for the iPad is US$270, while the manufacturing cost is US$5.
This puts the new iPad Air 2's manufacturing cost on a par with its predecessor, the iPad Air. The bill of materials for the first iPad Air was US$269.
IHS pointed out that Apple's profit margins for the higher-end 64GB and 128GB models of the iPad Air 2 are now lower, compared to the iPad Air, as they are selling at the same price point as the 32GB and 64GB first-generation iPad Air, respectively.
IHS described the refinements in the iPad Air 2 as minor improvements, and "nothing earthshaking".
It also said that the findings of its teardown account only for the hardware and manufacturing costs, and do not include expenses such as software, licensing, and royalties.
Among the refinements in the iPad Air 2 over the iPad Air is the newer A8X processor and 2GB of memory, revealed in an earlier teardown done by the folks over at iFixit.com, who documented what they found visually.