Samsung Electronics Co.’s latest flagship phone costs more to build than the previous model after the South Korean technology company upgraded the device’s camera, according to research firm TechInsights.

The new Galaxy S9+ smartphone cost $379 to build, up from $343 for last year’s Galaxy S8+, TechInsights estimated. The S9+ has a more advanced camera system that includes a second rear camera. Those components cost $48 versus $32 on the S8+.

Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg

As smartphone cameras have improved enough to be the go-to picture-taking devices for most people, photo quality has become a major battleground between Apple Inc., Samsung and other mobile technology companies.

“When you look at the camera sensors, Samsung took the higher-performing 12 megapixel sensor from the Note 8 in addition to the 12 megapixel sensor on the S8+, and combined those for the S9+ camera module,” TechInsight’s Al Cowsky said. “They’re incrementally improving things.”




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