Google Glass might be one of the hottest things on the market today. With many geeks clamoring to plop down their hard earned cash to get their hands on the hottest thing in wearable tech. However, you might be surprised to learn that you are paying a hefty premium to be an early adopter!
According to teardown.com, which you guessed it had a chance to teardown the device, the Google Glass comes with a bill of materials of just $79.78. That is $80 just for the parts to make a $1500 device!
Now lets face it w are all accustomed to mark-ups for various items. Most of our $600+ smartphones only cost a fraction of that price to actually build. And let's keep in mind much of that price is associated with R&D, marketing, development and other various costs associated with a new platform, apps and services.
We’re talking about millions of developer hours here. But that is still a pretty heft mark-up considering that many of the Glass hardware components are already in use in modern smartphones. The same goes for the software which is a modified version of Android and the company’s existing voice recognition technology combined.
Google has not revealed how many units it has sold, but up until a one-day sale in April, sales which have been limited to invites had been estimated in the 10,000 range. If it cost $10 million to develop the product and start up initial manufacturing, that would be $1,000 per unit, and the engineering and design costs could run much higher. This also wouldn't include other fees like those associated with licensing to use the intellectual property rights that Google doesn't directly own.
On the plus side though is just how affordable it is to manufacture the devices. That fact alone should give geeks everywhere a glimmer of hope that at some point in the not that distant future, the Glass will cost no more than few hundred bucks, making it much more affordable for the masses.