Teardowns Claim Google Glasses Made of Cheap Materials

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The Colorado-based technology firm IHS Inc. recently provided a teardown analysis of the hardware comprising the augmented reality, digital headset called Google Glass. IHS claims in this teardown treatment that the device?s Bill of Materials (BOM) costs can be priced at $ 132.47. Add a manufacturing expense of $ 20 to that amount and it will bring up a total of S 152.47.

This analysis by IHS is in line with other group?s insights about the BOM cost for Google Glass. TechInsights also released a similar teardown in April suggesting that the Glass hardware only costs about $ 80. Moreover, an analyst from Taiwan?s Topology Research Institute told reporters that the device can be sold by Google at $ 299 and still earn a hefty profit.

The most expensive part of the Google Glass? hardware is its frame with a titanium casing priced at $ 22. Other elements are the $ 20 Liquid Crystal On Silicon (LCOS) panel display, the processor for $ 8.85, and $ 12.50 for the USB cable, charger, earpiece, and casing.

However, IHS’ Senior Director of Cost Benchmarking Services Andrew Rassweiler commented that like any new product, the Bill of Materials only represents a portion of the entire value of a system especially for a device that attempts to reach a new technological platform such as Google Glass. ?He mentioned that putting BOM aside, vast majority of the device?s cost is tied up in constant software development, tooling costs, and NRE or non-recurring engineering expenses among many others.

Without giving out particulars on how much they shell out to produce one unit, Google has dismissed recent suggestions that the manufacture of Glass only cost the company a relatively low capital. One representative from Google stated that this latest teardown from IHS, similar to TechInsight?s analysis, is significantly off-base and further declared that the device costs considerably more to produce.

Rassweiler noted that the $ 1,500 price tag for a single unit of Google Glass does not just reflect the cost of acquiring hardware and developing software, that amount also paves the way for the establishment of an infrastructure to market, sell, and support the new, revolutionary Google device. In support of his observations, Rassweiler said that when you pay $ 1,500 for the device, you will get to enjoy a product that is worth radically more than just $ 152.47. Meanwhile, Google said that they have been working on a version of the device with a more economical price tag that could be launched before the current year ends.


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