Google Glass costs US$152.47 to make, but now on sale to public for US$1,500

14 May 2014

Google Glass smartglasses

Google Glass has gone on sale to the US public for US$1,500, but global information company IHS has revealed the cost to produce the smartglasses is just US$152.47.

When Google Glass is eventually available globally, the device is expected to retail for US$300-US$500 and even higher for integration into your own glasses, for example.

Google Glass is still just at beta stage so you’d really have to love your technology – and be slush with funds – to be able to fork out US$1,500 for the eyewear, which is now available to anyone in the US while stocks last.

The eyewear was briefly made available at the start of April but last night Google decided to move it to a more open beta. This will enable Google to test the device for any issues and fix them ahead of a wider consumer launch towards the end of 2014.

A materials and manufacturing teardown by IHS put the cost of creating Google Glass at US$152.47 apiece – a sliver of the current US$1,500 price tag.

However, according to The Wall Street Journal, Google disputes the reckoning by IHS as “wildly off” the mark and that the device costs a lot more to produce.

According to the IHS teardown, chips from Texas Instruments are a major part of the Glass design in terms of power management IC, audio codec and regulator ICs.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years