New iPod nano Has the Cheapest Build Cost, Highest Profit Margin Yet

The prolific pull-apart analysts at iSuppli have finished their strip down/sourcing assessment of the latest iPod nano, estimating that the 4GB model packs $58.85 worth of hardware, while the 8GB one costs Apple $82.85 in partage. The rub is that they've shaved off 13 bucks in hardware costs from the previous generation despite adding video goodness, and over $31 from the first gen of nanos. One probable way they've shoved down costs is by inciting some old fashioned price wars between their suppliers.

Apparently Apple's been flipping back and forth between suppliers for various parts as they move from one line to another, which iSuppli's Chris Crotty says they wouldn't do "unless there was a compelling cost-related reason to do it." Well, hopefully quality would make for another compelling reason to switch suppliers. You know, if they were getting crappy shipments of certain parts. [BW]