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Analyst: Flash memory makes MacBook Air more profitable than bigger laptops


We already know the MacBook Air is thinner than most laptops, but it turns out that the stack of money it makes Apple isn't. An analyst named Brian Marshall of Gleacher & Co. says that the flash memory in the MacBook Air is one of the big places that Apple makes its money on the machine, reportedly costing Apple just $80. According to Marshall, this means the profit margin on the Air is between 28 and 37 percent; that's almost 10 percent higher than Apple's traditional MacBook lines.

According to Andrew Rassweiler of iSuppli, also quoted in the story, Apple is now one of the world's biggest (if not the biggest) consumers of hardware flash memory, and its deals on memory are so good that the more memory in a device it makes, the better profit it will eventually see. Which, of course, is why the latest MacBook Air is so big on flash memory.

Of course, Marshall's analysis doesn't take into consideration marketing or advertising costs, and Apple certainly has a sizeable advertising budget going into its devices. But when you consider pure hardware costs, Apple's positioned its "satellite laptop" to be a very strong product indeed.

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