Acquired Electronics360

Mobile Devices

Nokia N900 Mobile Phone Teardown

30 November 2012
The following is an overview of a teardown analysis conducted by IHS Technology Teardown Services.

Overview / Main Features

The Nokia N900 is the handset maker's first Maemo smartphone which traces its lineage back to the Nokia 770 linux-based internet tablet [first introduced in 2005]. Nokia had also previously announced no fewer than 3 other interim Nxxx series devices (along with the ill-fated N810 with WiMax) before finally integrating a cellular radio into the mobile computing platform with the N900. As with other flagship models, Nokia promotes the N900 as their most sophisticated mobile phone, serving as a demonstration vehicle of what is possible with Maemo 5.0 and TI OMAP 3430 (ARM Cortex-A8 & PowerVR SGX graphics) processor. Interestingly, Nokia has now purposely made the OS delineation of using Maemo at the highest tier device such as the N900 while reserving the Symbian for their "premium" to mid tier devices (e.g. N97, X-series, 5800 XpressMusic) - in effect, supporting a dual advanced-OS strategy.

Nokia N900 Mobile Phone_(iSi) - Main PCB TopNokia N900 Mobile Phone_(iSi) - Main PCB Top
As a Mobile Internet Device (MID), the N900 features both a resistive touchscreen and a slide-out QWERTY keypad user interface and supports 3 bands of UMTS/HSDPA on 900, 1700 & 2100 MHz 3G frequencies as well as a standard quad-band GSM/EDGE radio for the backup 2G coverage. The N900's form factor also shrunk [relative to the original N770/N800] to evolve into a more "pocketability" phone dimensions. Also, the N900 features class-leading features such as a 5 MP auto focus primarly camera, integrated GPS & aGPS, Bluetooth v2.1 & FM radio, Ovi Maps application, WLAN and a whopping 32GB of internal storage along with expansion options via microSD.

Nokia N900 Mobile Phone_(iSi) - Display Module Exploded ViewNokia N900 Mobile Phone_(iSi) - Display Module Exploded View
Target Market

Smartphone /


Per press release, first introduced in August of 2009 and released in Q4 of that year

Pricing and Availability

Pricing - The Nokia N900 is available directly from Nokia or via discount online outlets such as Amazon for approximately $550. Limited number of carriers (such as Vodafone in the UK) offers full subsidies for the device along with a contract.

Availability - Worldwide

Volume Estimations

For the purposes of this teardown analysis, we have assumed a lifetime production volume of 1M units.

As a reminder, teardown volume production assumptions are primarily used for our cost analysis in terms of amortized NRE and tooling costs, especially for custom components specific to the model being analyzed (mechanical components especially). Unless assumed, volumes increment by an order of magnitude. Incremental changes in volume (say 1 million vs. 2) rarely have a large net effect on our final analysis.

Nokia N900 Mobile Phone_(iSi) - Primary Camera Module Exploded ViewNokia N900 Mobile Phone_(iSi) - Primary Camera Module Exploded View
iSuppli's Design Forecast Tool (DFT) and Market Shares

As part of iSuppli's Design Forecast Tool (DFT), we forecast handset shipments by major design feature and manufacture, as well as the number of design starts a manufacturer will have by feature set.

iSuppli estimates unit shipments of 106 million HSDPA handsets in 2009 global market. All estimates are based on a 2 year product life span assumption with an overall global market share of 36.4% for Nokia.

Cost Notes

See BOM for detailed analysis. High level cost items are:

Main Cost Drivers (Representing ~80% of total materials cost)

$65 - Toshiba Semiconductor - THGBM1G8D8EBAI2 - Flash - eMMC NAND, 32GB

$17.23 - Sony - ACX565AKM-7 - Display Module Value Line Item - 3.5" Diagonal, 16.7M Color LTPS TFT LCD, 800 x 480 Pixels

$14.02 - Texas Instruments - OMAP3430 - Applications Processor - OMAP, ARM Cortex-A8 Core, Power VR SGX Graphics Core, IVA 2+ (Image Video Audio) Accelerator, Integrated Image Signal Processor, PoP

$10.21 - Texas Instruments - NMP #4377210 - DBB - Digital Baseband Processor

$10 - Primary Camera Module Value Line Item - 5MP, CMOS, 1/2.5" Format, Auto Focus Lens

$8 - Samsung Semiconductor - KAT00F00DD-AE77 - MCP - 2Gb OneNAND Flash, 2Gb Mobile DDR, PoP

$7.98 - 10-Layer - Rigid/Flex Hybrid, HDI, RCF/FR4/Kapton, 3+1+2+1+3, Stacked Via, Lead-Free

$7.5 - Touchscreen Overlay / Display Window - 3.5", 4-Wire Resistive, Thin Painted Plastic Sheet Display Window Laminated on Clear Die-Cut ITO Polycarbonate Touch Panel, w/ Integral Flex PCB

$4.45 - Panasonic - ENW49701N - WLAN Module Value Line Item - 802.11b/g (Qty:1)

$3.75 - Nokia - BL-5J - Battery - Li-Ion, 3.7V, 1320mAh

$3.45 - Texas Instruments - NMP #4376047 - ABB - Analog Baseband / Power Management

$2.88 - Texas Instruments - TWL5030B - Audio Codec / Power Management

$2.41 - Texas Instruments - NL5350 - GPS - Single-Chip, A-GPS, NaviLink 5.0

$2.16 - AC-10U - Charger - 5V, 1.2A, w/ 6.6ft Cord & Velcro Cord Wrap

$2.11 - ST Microelectronics - VS6555AC - Secondary Camera Module Value Line Item - VGA, CMOS, 1/9" Format, Fixed Lens

Direct Materials $205.68

Total BOM Cost $216.74

What Is Not Included in our Cost Analysis

The total materials and manufacturing costs reported in this analysis reflect ONLY the direct materials cost (from component vendors and assorted EMS providers), AND manufacturing with basic test. Not included in this analysis are costs above and beyond the material manufacture of the core device itself - cost of intellectual property, royalties and licensing fees (those not already included into the per component price), software, software loading and test, shipping, logistics marketing and other channel costs including not only EMS provider and the OEM's margin, but that of other resellers. Our cost analysis is meant to focus on those costs incurred in the manufacture of the core device and exceptionally in some circumstances the packaging and literature as well.

Manufacturing Notes

OEM/ODM/EMS Relationships / Manufacturing

According to iSuppli's "Global OEM Manufacturing and Design Analysis - Mobile Handsets Q1 2009", Nokia conducts much of the final assembly in-house throughout their various global operations while utilizing EMS providers to source mobile handset modules and sub-assemblies. iSuppli estimates that Nokia has increase their share of manufacturing to nearly 83% of their handsets in 2008.

Nokia maintains worldwide manufacturing operations in North America (Mexico), South America (Brazil), Asia Pacific region (Korea) [which is the likely the facility where the N900 is manufactured], Greater China, India and 4 other locations in both Eastern and Western Europe. iSuppli estimates that Nokia used 6 ODMs & EMS providers in 2008 with Foxconn, Elcoteq and Jabil making up roughly 15% of Nokia's overall manufacturing capacity.

Country of Origin / Volume Assumptions

Based on markings, the unit was assembled in Korea. Furthermore, we have assumed that custom mechanicals (plastics, metals, etc.) were also sourced in Korea.

Country of origin assumptions relate directly to the associated cost of manufacturing, where calculated by iSuppli. In the cases of "finished" sub-assemblies (such as the LCD), we do not calculate internal manufacturing costs, but rather assess the market price of the finished product in which case country of origin assumptions may or may not have a direct effect on pricing.

Remember also that labor rates are applied directly only to hand inserted components and systems in our bill of materials, and although regional assumptions do, these new rates do not have a direct effect on our modeled calculations of placement costs for automated SMD assembly lines. "Auto" inserted components (such as SMT components) placement costs are calculated by an iSuppli algorithm which allocates a cost per component based on the size and pincount of the device. This calculation is affected by country or region of origin as well.

Nokia N900 Mobile Phone_(iSi) - Main PCB TopNokia N900 Mobile Phone_(iSi) - Main PCB Top

Design for Manufacturing / Device Complexity

The Nokia N900 has an overall component count of 989 parts excluding box contents, of which, 215 are mechanical nature.Mobile phones with complexities reaching 1000 parts are now common for the high-end of the smartphone range.The Nokia N900 finds itself along the same complexity as Motorola Droid, Palm Pre and Apple iPhone 3Gs.

Component counts have a direct bearing on the overall manufacturing cycle times and costs, and also can increase or decrease overall yields and re-work. Our calculations of manufacturing costs factor counts and more qualitative complexities in the design. The cost of manufacturing is also, to some extent, decreased in this case because of assumed labor rate applied for Korea.

Note that manual labor has a much smaller effect on auto-insertion assembly lines (for the Main PCB, for example), where manufacturing costs are much more capital equipment intensive and driven by these investment costs.

Nokia N900 Mobile Phone_(iSi) - Main PCB BottomNokia N900 Mobile Phone_(iSi) - Main PCB Bottom

Design Notes

Nokia has a long tradition with TI OMAP apps processors and in the case of the N900, Nokia employs the TI OMAP 3430 processor which first came to our attention on the Palm Pre smartphone back in May of 2009. In fact, from the perspective of a mobile phone, the Nokia N900 - like its traditional mobile handset siblings - is primarily a TI design with TI parts in the digital baseband, analog baseband and power management slots as well as the WLAN & GPS chip solutions. The RF Transceivers are ST-Ericsson; again, exhibiting very similar design DNA to Nokia handsets we've seen in the past. Rounding out the cellular radio design, RF Micro provides the 2 power amplifier solutions.The N900 has by far, the largest flash memory content of any Nokia (or smartphone) we've encountered thus far with 32GBs of NAND on board. Also, and rather surprisingly, we've discovered a Sony 3.5-inch display module in the N900. If history is any guide, we would expect to see a Sharp display as Sharp traditionally have been the vendor of choice in previous Nokia handsets.

Nokia N900 Mobile Phone_(iSi) - Main PCB Bottom (cont.)Nokia N900 Mobile Phone_(iSi) - Main PCB Bottom (cont.)
Here is a summary of the major components used in the Nokia N900 design:

Main PCB

MPU / Memory

  • Applications Processor - Texas Instruments - OMAP3430
  • MCP - Samsung Semiconductor - KAT00F00DD-AE77 (2Gb OneNAND Flash, 2Gb Mobile DDR)

Digital Baseband

  • Digital Baseband Processor -Texas Instruments - NMP #4377210

Analog Baseband / Power Management

  • Audio Codec / Power Management - Texas Instruments - TWL5030B
  • ABB - Texas Instruments - NMP #4376047


  • Flash - Toshiba Semiconductor - THGBM1G8D8EBAI2 (eMMC NAND, 32GB)
  • MCP - Numonyx - M39L0R7070 (128Mb NOR Flash, 128Mb Mobile DDR)

RF Transceiver

  • RF Transceiver - ST-Ericsson - NMP #4380116


  • WLAN - Texas Instruments - WL1251BLYFBR

User Interface

  • Audio Codec - Texas Instruments - TLV320AIC34IZAS
  • USB On-the-Go Transceiver - ST-Ericsson - ISP1707AET


  • GPS - Texas Instruments - NL5350


  • Bluetooth / FM Radio - Broadcom - BCM2048B0KUBG

Power Amplifier

  • PAM - RF Micro Devices - RF6278 (Tri-Band WCDMA/HSDPA/HSUPA 900/1700/2100)
  • Transmit Module - RF Micro Devices - RF6283 (PAM, Quad-Band GSM/GPRS/EDGE, w/ Integrated Antenna Switch)


  • Primary Camera Module - 5MP, CMOS, 1/2.5" Format, Auto Focus Lens - Image Sensor:


  • Display Module - Sony - ACX565AKM-7 (3.5" Diagonal, 16.7M Color TFT LCD, 800 x 480 Pixels)

Nokia N900 Mobile Phone_(iSi) - Box ContentsNokia N900 Mobile Phone_(iSi) - Box Contents

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