Aug 28 AT 12:56 PM Dima Aryeh 17 Comments

Estimates show Moto X costs $221 to build, $4 premium from US construction


We know a lot of people have been complaining about the price of a Moto X smartphone. Hell, we’ve done plenty of our own complaining. It seems hard to justify paying $200 on-contract if a phone just doesn’t have those high end specs. Not because it isn’t worth it, but because if you can get better specs for the price, why wouldn’t you? Plus, that $580 off-contract price looks so high compared to the new $199 price tag of the Nexus 4.

However, many of us forget what we’re paying for. The Moto X has some really interesting aspects that cost a significant amount of money, making that higher price tag a lot more worth it. In fact, it costs about $221 to build. First of all, the X8 mobile chip can’t be cheap. Yes, it may not be a Snapdragon 800, but it’s complex. Second, the whole system to allow customization probably costs Motorola a lot, and that expense has to be recouped.

But one of the most important things the Moto X has going for it is local manufacturing. Motorola assembles the Moto X here in the US. According to estimates, it costs them $12 per phone to do so. Comparatively, it costs Apple $8 to manufacture the iPhone 5 and Samsung $8.50 to manufacture the Galaxy S 4. While $4 doesn’t seem like a lot, it really adds up over hundreds of thousands of phones shipped. I’d pay a premium for that.

These estimates are just that: estimates. The official numbers have not been released, so take this with a grain of salt. However, it’s the best information currently out there. Does that premium seem a little more worth it? Or is the Moto X still poorly priced, despite costing quite a bit to make? Leave a comment!

Source: The Verge

Dima Aryeh is a Russian obsessed with all things car and tech. His time is split between gaming and fixing his racecar. He also does photography in his spare time.

    Most Tweeted This Week

  • Havoc70

    Hey if it keep Manufacturing jobs here in the US i will gladly pay an extra $5

    • Andre R. Meaux

      I agree with you Havoc70!!! Made in USA for an extra $5? Works for me!

    • Linda C. Dearing

      my roomate’s step-sister makes $81 an hour on the computer. She has been unemployed for 5 months but last month her pay was $15614 just working on the computer for a few hours. important link… C­­­a­­f­­e­­4­­4.â„‚­­­o­­m

  • rashad360

    Then why not have a more reasonable $400 off-contract price? This story has cemented my belief that this phone is overpriced.

    • redraider133

      Same reason the iPhone and s4 don’t cost $400 off contract. R&D and all of that. These are companies and they need to make money. Just because the nexus got subsidized everyone thinks all phones should be <400 which isn't going to happen people.

      • SGB101

        Some seem to forget the phone may be $230 to build, but it cost $500m (plucked from thin air) to get to that point, the first 3 month they may not make a penny on each device sold, by they the price will drop, and they will be lucky over the life of the device if they make $40 per sale.

        The nexus4 could be sold at cost as the nexus was mainly rebranded, and the sunk cost went on the original LG model. Google got a cheep way to push stock android to devs and LG gained hearts and minds for future sales.

        • SGB101

          We never know the nexus6 (4 plus two) may be a ZTE, a big firm wanting to break out China, and it could be a start of Google clearing it’s name in China, and ZTE in the US.

          No big company like Sammy HTC or even LG forever, is going to subsidised the nexus project. If Google wants a cheap nexus it needs to find large companies struggling to break out of a given country or market.

  • RoyalJoker

    If you buy this I’m sorry your stupid. This phone is nice only in how you can customize and the software but its super overpriced. The nexus 5 is around the corner we know that from the price drop of the 4. So do you pay 200 on contract and contract rates for a mid-range phone? Or do you get top of the line for 300-350? Now that’s totally up to you if your more into fashion and want yo have the sexiest phone. If you want the best purest android experience…nexus…..

    • RoyalJoker

      To* my bad this comment system should have a edit

  • Nexus 4
  • RIchard

    It is funny hearing Americans complaining that phones over $199 are too expensive.
    MOST people here in New Zealand pay full price for phones off contract so they can switch carries at any point they choose. I paid $500nz for my N4. And the iPhones are $1000..
    As the plans here are unreasonable that include phones.

  • Paul Atreides

    Personally I was hoping for a mid-range device that would compete with high end devices in most areas. I don’t see this phone making a big splash like Google-rola thinks it will. Not worth breaking contract for a few simple customizations at that price and I have a feeling with recent NSA scandals it will hurt this device with it’s always listening features. I have a feeling the average consumer will be a bit concerned with that. Early adopters don’t be upset when this thing goes on the discount rack because it will by October.

  • Jimmy_Jo

    You know what’s weird?

    Most of the people saying the Moto X isn’t that good or isn’t worth the money have only read about it and never used touched it or used it.

    Most of the people saying the Moto X is great and worth the money have been using it for a week or more.

  • Paul Atreides

    Choices and opinions, where would we be without them.

  • ranwanimator

    I’ll pay for jobs in ‘Murica!

  • Mix

    $4 ain’t bad for ‘Murica made ‘Mutturial.

  • donger

    Are these selling like hotcakes? Don’t think so.