Overpriced? The Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra apparently costs just US$528 to build
The Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra represents Samsung's most ambitious smartphone yet, and that reflects in its ridiculous US$1400 price tag. It's always going to be hard to justify a smartphone costing as much as a premium business laptop, and a new report by TechInsights has now given some...insight into how reasonable the S20 Ultra's price actually is.
According to TechInsights, the Galaxy S20 Ultra 5G costs Samsung US$528.50 to make. That figure accounts for parts prices (BoM), and doesn't cover marketing, labor, or R&D. For some perspective, the Galaxy S10+ cost US$420 to build last year; the Galaxy S9+ cost US$379.5 two years ago; and the OnePlus 7 Pro cost just US$324. The new Mi 10 costs Xiaomi an estimated US$440.
But how do those numbers compare to the phones' MSRPs? The S9+ retailed for US$840 at launch. Bill of Materials (BoM) total accounted for just 45% of that. The S10+ had a launch MSRP of US$999, with its US$420 BoM total accounting for 42% of that figure. The S20 Ultra 5G, however, has a BoM total that accounts for 38% of its MSRP.
From those numbers, it's easy to see that Samsung's profit margins didn't suddenly become a lot larger. There's just a 4% difference in the percentage of BoM total to MSRP between the S10+ and S20 Ultra 5G. However, that doesn't make the phone's massive price tag any easier to swallow. US$1400 for a smartphone is ridiculous no matter how you look at it.