In this day and age, it seems that everyone has a smartphone from teenagers to adults, these technological devices have become an integral part of everyday life.
But why is it that these devices cost more than laptops? Is it because of their greater portability or the components used to manufacture them?
What factors contribute to this higher price tag? Ultimately, what causes smartphones to cost more than laptops?
There are several reasons why smartphones cost more than laptops, here are the four potential reasons why the i explain below: exotic materials, miniaturization, constant Technology Innovations and Higher Demand.
Smartphone manufacturers use high-quality and expensive materials to create their devices.
For example, the latest smartphones often use materials like Gorilla Glass, which is strong and scratch-resistant, and aluminum or stainless steel frames which are durable and lightweight.
These materials are not only expensive but also difficult to work with due to their rigidity and thickness.
In addition to the materials used for the physical components, smartphones also require advanced processors, memory chips, and sensors that need to be ultra-compact and energy-efficient to fit within the small form factor of a smartphone.
These components are developed and manufactured by specialized companies that invest heavily in research and development to create the latest chipsets, displays, and camera innovations.
As a result, the cost of these components is high and adds to the overall cost of the device.
For instance, the iPhone 12 with 128GB, which costs around $829, has a bill of materials (BOM) cost of almost $415.
This includes the cost of the components, such as the processor, display, and camera, as well as other materials like the battery, casing, and accessories.
The BOM cost does not include other expenses like labor, research, and development, marketing, and distribution, which further increase the cost of production.
The use of exotic materials, the need for ultra-compact and energy-efficient components, and the high cost of research and development all contribute to the high cost of production of smartphones.
Miniaturization is the process of making electronic components and devices smaller and more compact.
This is a critical factor in the design and manufacturing of smartphones, as they need to fit a significant amount of technology into a small form factor.
However, miniaturization is expensive, as it requires specialized processes and materials to create the components that are small enough to fit in a smartphone.
As electronic components are made smaller, the cost of production increases exponentially.
This is because miniaturization requires more advanced and complex manufacturing processes that are difficult to scale.
As a result, the cost of producing a tiny component is much higher than producing a larger one with the same functionality.
Smartphones are designed to be compact and portable, yet they need to have the same power and storage capabilities as most low-end laptops.
This means that smartphone manufacturers need to use the latest technology and high-quality components to fit everything into a small package.
As a result, the majority of the cost of a smartphone is in the components, which have been miniaturized to fit within the device.
Miniaturization is expensive because it requires specialized processes and materials to create smaller components.
Smartphones have the same power and storage as most low-end laptops, and the majority of the cost of a smartphone is in the components due to the high cost of miniaturization.
Constant Technology Innovations
The smartphone industry is constantly evolving and improving with the latest technology innovations.
Manufacturers are always trying to incorporate newer and better components into their devices to offer better performance and features to their customers.
However, this constant innovation comes at a cost, and the cost of manufacturing smartphones is increasing as a result.
One of the primary reasons for the increase in manufacturing costs is the constant advancements in components.
The latest smartphones come equipped with advanced features like OLED screens, high-resolution cameras, high-capacity batteries, and powerful processors.
These components are more expensive to manufacture than the ones used in older models. Smartphone manufacturers need to invest heavily in research and development to come up with these new components.
Research and development is another factor that contributes to the rising cost of manufacturing smartphones.
Manufacturers invest a significant amount of money in research and development to come up with new technologies that can improve the user experience.
This process involves hiring engineers, designers, and other professionals, as well as conducting tests and experiments. The cost of research and development is usually passed on to the consumers through higher prices.
Increased competition in the smartphone industry also plays a role in the rising cost of manufacturing. Manufacturers need to keep up with the latest technology to stay ahead of their competitors.
This means that they need to invest in research and development and use the latest components to offer the best features and performance.
As a result, the cost of manufacturing increases, and the prices of the devices go up.
The constant technology innovations in the smartphone industry have led to an increase in the cost of manufacturing.
The advancements in components, research and development, and increased competition have all contributed to this rise in cost.
While these innovations have resulted in better features and performance, they have also made smartphones more expensive.
As a result, it remains to be seen how smartphone manufacturers will balance the need for innovation with the cost of manufacturing and the impact on consumers.
The higher demand for smartphones compared to laptops can be attributed to several factors. Firstly, smartphones are more portable and convenient to carry around, allowing users to stay connected and productive while on the go.
They also offer a wide range of features, such as high-quality cameras, touchscreens, and advanced apps, which make them more versatile and useful than traditional PCs.
Additionally, smartphones are constantly evolving, with new models being released every year that offer improved performance and features.
This leads to users upgrading their smartphones at a faster rate than their notebook PCs, which contributes to the widening performance gap between the two devices.
Finally, the cost of smartphones has also decreased over time, making them more accessible to a wider range of users. This has driven up demand for smartphones, as more people can afford to purchase them.
All of these factors combined have led to a higher demand for smartphones compared to laptops, as evidenced by the estimated 6.06 billion smartphones in use globally at the end of 2020 — three times the number of PCs.
Here I provide you with a list of factors that contribute to the higher cost of smartphones compared to laptops:
Factors that contribute to higher smartphone cost:
|Research and development
|Complex manufacturing process
|Branding and marketing
|Supply and demand dynamics
|Dedicated operating system
|High-capacity, expensive batteries
|Warranty and support services
These factors can vary depending on the brand, model, and specific features of the device.
In conclusion, the number of smartphones in use globally has tripled compared to the number of PCs, with an estimated 6.06 billion smartphones in use as of the end of 2020.
This increase in smartphone usage is due to the constant advancements in technology, which have led to better features and performance.
As a result, users are upgrading their smartphones at a faster rate than their notebook PCs, leading to a widening performance gap between the two devices.
It remains to be seen how this trend will continue in the future and whether PC manufacturers will adapt to changing consumer preferences.