GameSpot user ironstaunchB has shared his estimates for how much it’d cost to manufacture the Nintendo 3DS. At this stage it’s all pure speculation, but I thought his estimations would make for an interesting discussion. Here’s a paraphrased version of what he expects:
- Two parallax barrier Sharp 3D LCD touch screens: roughly $50 ($25 x 2)
- One processor (Tegra, Snapdragon, etc…): roughly $30.
- PCB: $10 at most
- Battery and charger: $10
- Casing (plastic, stylus): $10
- Two cameras: $15
- 8GB flash memory: $15
- Wi-Fi components: $10
- 128 MB RAM: 10$
- GPS: $2.50
- Accelerometer: $2.50
- Speakers and mic: $5
- Assembly cost: $7
He admits that he has assumed higher-end components will be used by Nintendo with these estimates, which is fair enough for the purpose of calculating a maximum price for the 3DS, although there are a few numbers I’d like to shoot down straight away.
Firstly, it’s looking doubtful that the nVidia Tegra chip will be used in the 3DS, as reports from developers have been contrary to that belief. I wouldn’t be surprised if Nintendo skimped on the quality of the chip they used to keep the price down, although it will still have to be somewhat powerful to handle the additional 3D effects.
Plus, there’s a chance the displays from Sharp could be a bit cheaper than $25 each, seeing as CNET suggested that the price would be $20-$30 if the screen size was 4-inches, but the specification for Sharp’s display set the screen size at 3.4 inches, potentially lowering the cost slightly. But CNET may not have accounted for the touch screen technology present in at least one of the screens.
And lastly, I’m not expecting the inclusion of the GPS component – is it me, or does GPS just not feel very Nintendo-like?
As ironstaunchB (why can’t people share their real names? It’d make referencing useful information less ridiculous) continues to point out the total manufacturing cost for the 3DS, based on his estimations would equal $180. And, going with the same profit margin of the DSi of $40, we can assume the 3DS will cost a maximum of $220.
But, remember, that’s if Nintendo sticks with all the high-end components, and if their profit margins remain consistent. There’s a likely chance they’ll choose cheaper components, dropping the price for the consumer below the $200 mark, which would seem much more realistic to me.
What do you estimate the cost of the 3DS to be?