Of course, the laymen aren't engineers.
When it comes to a device like the iPad, the layman really doesn't care much for horsepower above what it takes to watch video, play games, surf and e-mail.
if it delivers all that simply and effectively, it adds value well beyond the sum of the parts.
That is the beauty of the iPad.
I am astounded that the parts used in an iPad cost this much. I expected Apple to be making margins of 70% upwards on their iPad and iPhone products.
If these figures are accurate, maybe Apple isn't so mean and evil after all - I thought their products were just over-priced to carve a niche of "luxury" tech products for themselves in the market.
I have costed a few consumer-volume electronic products, although nowhere near Apple's volumes.
The gross margins achievable (end-user selling price less unit build cost) were frankly astounding, 90-95%, but the distribution chain's margins and product-specific cost of sales left precious little as a contribution from each unit sale.
All these little slices have then to cover the cost of getting the show on the road and keeping it there, and I guess Apple (of all companies) has a significant spend on management, marketing, R&D, legal and liability insurance over and above a regular high-tech company's running costs.
Basically every penny counts and I guess Apple's vertically integrated sales channel is an important part of that.
Even that has been changing. You can bet supermarkets get a decent margin for selling Apple, or they certainly wouldn't bother.
I seriously doubt Apple do any hoarding.
If anything, Apple has supply issues which is why they keep buying up supply companies.
If anyone does the hoarding Apple would force that onto the supplier.
The actual costs are completely secret. Even those working pretty close to the product design typically don't know what the costs are. They certainly are not what the industry thinks.
The new iPad is likely to be my 'computer' when I go on vacations. I bought a keyboard with it and it can do almost everything I need to do. And although Apple is earning a small amount less per iPad sold, they have their best sales yet! http://detectapple.com/ipad-demand-of-the-charts-according-to-apple/
The iPad is excellent for reading the news. The deployment model for automation where there are many different users and they would have to download from iTunes while you wait for Apple to approve you app is unattractive. I also would prefer to see lower margins (say five percent) and know people assembling them are better looked after. The price differential between then iPad and MacBookAir is not that much for people wanting to do something useful, but cannot deny it is a brilliant product. I still have an iPad 1, and don't see the need to move up. (Also server, laptop etc, but too much hype for what you can really do with it for the price).