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iPhone 4S found to have Samung, Hynix parts

Posted October. 22, 2011 03:09,   


Korean companies are known to supply key components of Apple`s new smartphone iPhone 4S to the American company. The iPhone 4S is selling like hot cakes as it is considered the final work of the late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs.

According to a report released Friday by the U.S.-based market research company iSuppli, the iPhone 4S`s application processor is the product of Samsung Electronics and its NAND flash is manufactured by Hynix Semiconductor. iSuppli disassembled the iPhone 4S (16GB) to draw up the report.

The application processor, the brain of smartphones, is Samsung`s dual-core A5 processor. iSuppli said "die mark" on the product show that Samsung manufactured it. Though the A5 chip does not have the Samsung logo, it holds Samsung`s pattern on its surface as discerned by experts.

Before the release of the iPhone 4S, foreign media said Apple changed its main supplier for the A5 chip to the Taiwanese chip manufacturer TSMC. TSMC, however, was unable to meet Apple’s demand in quality and quantity, experts said.

The iPhone 4S`s NAND flash, a special form of flash memory capable of keeping data even when the power supply is cut off, is a Hynix product. NAND flash for the 16GB model costs 19.20 U.S. dollars, the second most expensive part among components for the iPhone 4S after the display, which costs 23 dollars.

The NAND flash for the 32 GB model costs 38.40 dollars and that for the 63GB model 76.80 dollars.

The iPhone 4S`s 8-megapixel camera sensor is supplied by Sony and wireless communication chips are from Qualcomm and Avago Technologies. The manufacturer of the iPhone 4S display remains unknown but LG Display appears to the main supplier, the report said.

iSuppli estimated that the combined cost of components of the iPhone 4S 16GB model is 188 dollars. Apple supplies this model to mobile carriers for 450 dollars. The retail price of the product in the U.S. is 649 dollars, but customers can buy it for 199 dollars under an agreement with wireless carriers for a long-term use.

The gap between the cost of components and retail price includes assembly cost, hardware and software development cost, royalties, marketing and distribution costs and profits.

jaeyuna@donga.com kimhs@donga.com