Apple's new iPad is predictably selling like hotcakes, but if a teardown analysis is any indication, margins may be slimmer than for previous models.
Apple has revealed it has already sold 3 million units since the device went on sale in 11 markets on Friday. This is a first-weekend record for the device.
Apple didn't disclose similar figures for the device, but Reuters reported at the time that analysts estimated that launch weekend sales were nearly 1 million.
Separately, IHS iSuppli has published the results of a teardown of the new iPad, estimating that the parts for the mid-range 32GB WiFi+LTE model has a bill of materials (BOM) of $364.35.
While this BOM is just 50% of the $729 retail price, it is nearly 9% more than the BOM for the 32GB Wi-Fi+3G version of the iPad 2 at the time of launch. The iPad 2 debuted at the same $729 retail price.
The base 16GB Wi-Fi only model has a BOM of $306.05, compared to the iPad 2's BOM of $236.95. The most expensive 64GB Wi-Fi+LTE version has a BOM of $397.95, and a retail price of $829.00.
According to IHS, one of the main factors driving up costs for the third-generation version is the introduction of the 2048x1536 resolution screen. This has driven up the cost of the display by $30 to $87 per unit.
Apple's bitter rival, Samsung, is still the biggest winner in terms of supplying parts for the new iPad. IHS estimates that Samsung has a 30.2% share of the BOM for the 32GB LTE version, and that in models where Samsung also provided the NAND Flash, this raises to nearly 40%.
In other iPad news, some early adopters have been d with their new iPads overheating, to the extent they become uncomfortable to hold. It is currently unclear how widespread this issue is.