Mobile Devices

HTC XDAIII Mobile Phone Teardown

10 January 2005
The following is an overview of a teardown analysis conducted by IHS Benchmarking.

Main Features

PDA phone (slide out format with QWERTY keyboard) w/ quad band GSM/GPRS (there is a CDMA version for the Chinese market - China Unicom CU928 Pocket PC Phone), 3.5 TFT/LTPS screen with touchscreen, 400MHz processor, Wi-Fi (802.11b), Bluetooth, VGA Camera, SDIO slot, runs Windows Mobile 2003 for Pocket PC 2003 Second Edition.

HTC XDAIII Mobile Phone Main ImageHTC XDAIII Mobile Phone Main Image
Marketing / positioning

Very high-end PDA phone - The XDA III is a derivative of HTC's ""Blue Angel" line of PDA phones, and appears to be offered by several service providers and manufacturers under various other monikers (T-Mobile MDAIII, Siemens SX66). This device offers just about everything available and desirable in terms of wireless connectivity - , but perhaps, not so oddly does not offer 3G data transmission (EDGE). This device blurs the edge between PDA and phone - and largely leans, from a value perspective - more on the PDA side of the fence.

This device retails for anywhere from $450 (subsidized) to $900 (unsubsidized) and up - and represents the top end of the spectrum for most service provider's portfolios.

HTC XDAIII Mobile Phone Cost AnalysisHTC XDAIII Mobile Phone Cost Analysis
Cost Notes

The device is the most expense smart phone we have analyzed to date (roughly $243) with the largest component count (1485), most sophisticated PCB (10 layer with enormous I/O count), and largest on-board memory content seen to date - 128 Mbytes of Mobile RAM, Flash Disk-On-Chip - 512Mbit, an MCP (32Mbit NOR Flash and 4Mbit SRAM) and an EEPROM device.

But it doesn't stop there - this design is not highly integrated and has the largest semiconductor content ($115 worth across 75 integrated circuits, not to mention 63 discrete semiconductor devices) of any smart phone seen to date as well. The most notable of these devices include a 400Mhz Intel PXA263 Microprocessor, ATI IMAGEON 3200 Multimedia Co-Processor, and Bluetooth, 802.11b, DBB and ABB chips from Texas Instruments. Several HTC ASICs round out the major integrated circuits.

The display is one of the largest in PDA phones and represents the largest single cost item (including the touchscreen) at roughly $50.

Main Cost Drivers Representing approximately 67% of total materials costs:

Display - 3.5 inch TFT/LTPS 65K Color / 240x320 w/Touchscreen

Memory Chips (combined)

Intel PXA263 400mHz Processor

GSM/GPRS Baseband Chips

802.11b / Bluetooth Chips

Battery (3.7V / 1450mAh / Li-Ion)


HTC XDAIII Mobile Phone - Main PCB Top DisassembledHTC XDAIII Mobile Phone - Main PCB Top Disassembled
Manufacturing Notes

  • Made in Taiwan - Based on the label we modeled manufacturing costs based on the assumption that the unit is not only end-assembled in Taiwan, but the PCB is also produced in Taiwan - with mechanical items (plastics and metals) produced in China.
  • Volume Assumptions - Although it does not have a major impact on our modeling costs - we have also assumed that approximately 200K units will be produced over the product's life.
  • 10% of total - Manufacturing costs on this device represent approximately 10% of total value - which is within norms for most handsets. This is because, despite the high level of complexity, and the high absolute cost of manufacturing, as a percentage of total given the elevated materials costs, appears normal.

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