iPad 2: Bill of Materials, Touch Subsystem Costs More Than Original iPad


The touch screen in the iPad 2 has been modified and updated in the iPad 2, but the LG Display appears to be the same; and our cost estimates for the touch screen are markedly higher. The display and touch screen subsystem in the iPad 2 costs $127.00, compared to our initial $95.00 estimates for the iPad 1, based on pricing from April 2010. The difference is due almost entirely to the cost of the touch screen. The reason for the increase comes in large part from manufacturing challenges that the touch screen manufacturers have experienced since beginning production. Production yields, though they have been improving, has been very low throughout 2010, and drove prices to be much higher than initially expected. Furthermore, refinements in the touch screen specifications have driven the price point even higher for the iPad 2. Contributing factors to that cost increases include more expensive glue to improve the efficiency/performance in the bonding, thinner Gorilla cover glass and more detailed inspection process requiring additional equipment for optical and panel examination.

That’s interesting. I thought the cover glass and the LCD weren’t optically bonded according to iFixit. If they were iFixit would have had an extremely difficult if not impossible time separating the two. The glue, and a ton of it, was holding the cover glass to the chassis, not the LCD. So this cost increase for optical bonding is bunk. And I’m not so sure that Apple is using Corning Gorilla Glass on the iPad. Thank goodness LG Display continues to be the primary supplier of the beautiful 9.7-inch IPS LCD.