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October 4, 2021

🚀 Good morning! This is a massive, massive week: Android 12 launches today, Windows 11 (two million computers already have it) is out tomorrow, Nintendo Switch OLED is out Friday, and more!

$$$: iPhone 13 Pro vs S21 Plus costs
Apple iPhone 13 Pro Max vs Samsung Galaxy S21 Plus
Robert Triggs / Android Authority

Both the new Apple iPhone 13 Pro and Samsung Galaxy S21 Plus have a retail price of $999. But again, as in previous years, Apple is making less than Samsung on each device, suggests analysis. 

  • Analytics firm TechInsights brings to light the hard facts from its data on its Bill of Materials, showing that the iPhone 13 Pro costs Apple an estimated $570 to build, while the Galaxy S21 Plus is estimated at $508, with both at 256GB storage.
techinsights iphone13pro 1
  • I don’t particularly rate the graph axis scaling here, but it gives you an idea of three phones comparatively.
  • Most of the cost usually comes from, in rough order, the display, processor and modems, camera, modules, memory (volatile and non-volatile together), while elements like battery and final IP testing are the lower cost items.
  • As a reference, the iPhone 12 Pro was billed at $548.50 (which you can see in the graph), while the Galaxy S20 Ultra was $528.50, and the S10 Plus was estimated by TechInsights as having a material cost of $420.
  • What we get here is the estimated build cost translating to 57% of the iPhone 13 Pro’s retail pricing.

What it means:

  • Well, it’s hard to say, especially as this analysis is standalone interesting, but Samsung usually discounts its devices and bundles more with them and adds trade-in deal, et cetera.
  • Already there’s been some decent deals on the S21 range including the S21 Plus. And, Black Friday isn’t far away where Samsung is usually aggressive.
  • That said, on face value, this means more margin for Samsung on hardware, though it’s difficult to know exact details on where money is flowing, given marketing, research, and soft costs aren’t well known.
  • And there are other confounding details: Apple designs its own processors but pays the likes of TSMC to manufacture its processors, while Samsung manufactures more of its own materials, including its displays and NAND RAM.
  • Apple has used Samsung Display for its flagship smartphones in the past too.
  • All said, Samsung clearly has room to work with for more attractive pricing on its S22 series.

Plus: There’s also a graphic from the analytics firm showing how Apple adjusted its front-facing FaceID tech to make a smaller notch on the iPhone 13 Pro:

techinsights iphone13pro 2
Tristan Rayner / Android Authority

🆕 Lenovo Legion Play leaked: An Android-based rival to Steam Deck with some kind of 7″ display, 7,000mAh battery, but was originally planned to be released months ago (Android Authority).

🔊 WhatsApp could make listening to voice messages a lot less annoying by keeping them playing wherever you are in the app (Android Authority).

📺 ICYMI: Google Pixel 6 Japanese TV ad drops, and it’s full of widgets (Android Authority).

🍎 Analysis: Apple makes more profit on video games ($8.5 billion a year in 2019) than Sony, Activision, Nintendo and Microsoft’s gaming division combined, without making a single game (WSJ, $).

🍏 Apple has reportedly canceled its plans to release an updated iPad Air with an OLED display in 2022, due to “concerns around quality and costs”, Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said. But, it will still release a mini-LED 11″ iPad Pro (MacRumors). (Unannounced product getting canceled isn’t really big news, but the OLED display component not working for Apple is interesting.) One more Apple thing: the next MacBook Pro is still coming in October in two M1X variants.

👁️ EyePhone: An ophthalmologist has detailed using the iPhone 13 Pro’s macro camera to quickly and briefly track changes in his patients’ eyes, which previously cost $15K (Also, I don’t think there’s a reason the doctor here couldn’t have used an Android) (PetaPixel).

👉 “The Tragedy of Safari 15 for Mac’s ‘Tabs’” (Daring Fireball).

🚨 The whistleblower who took Facebook Files to the Wall Street Journal is Frances Haugen, an engineer and data scientist and a former product manager at Facebook, who saw “conflicts of interest between what was good for the public and what was good for Facebook.” Big time respect. Anyway, it came out on TV on 60 Minutes on CBS, and there’s more neutral coverage here (AP), while Gizmodo goes for: Nine horrifying facts from the Facebook whistleblower.

🎸 Seinfeld hits Netflix, but some visual jokes have been cropped out of view with the 16×9 switch (Engadget).

📉 Google Pay’s disastrous year continues, promised bank account feature is dead (Ars Technica).

🔋 Electric truck maker Rivian, which put a bunch of media and influencers in its trucks over the past weeks, is filing for IPO, and revealed it is burning incredible amounts of cash as it launches its trucks and tries to sell them, too. Rivian’s chasing Tesla, and the IPO is hotly anticipated (NY Times, gift link for DA readers).

📉 Speaking of Tesla: Tesla sold 241,300 cars in the third quarter, its most ever, while other automakers saw big drops during the supply chain crunch (The Verge).

🤔 “Believe it or not, you can legally buy unclaimed Amazon and USPS packages,” just watch for scams (CNET).

🦟 Great question: “About 6 months ago millions of genetically modified mosquitoes were to be released in the Florida Keys. Is there any update on how that’s going?” (r/askscience).

Monday Meme

The winner this week, because concepts are better than grueling theory:

concepts only please
Tristan Rayner / Android Authority

Bonus: “I am reasonably sure that whoever lives at this residential address was attempting to use google but accidentally set up a business(Twitter).


Tristan Rayner, Senior Editor

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