Following an iSuppli teardown, it is revealed that Apple makes over $400 profit on every 16GB iPhone 3G S, and a whopping $500 on every 32GB iPhone 3G S. It's not so much iPhone 3G S as iPhone 3G $$$!
Yep, you read that right. After factoring in component costs and even manufacturing costs, Apple still gets change from $200.
Here's the cost of components breakdown as carried out by iSuppli:
Now, once you've absorbed that, consider that Apple sells 16GB iPhone 3G S handsets to AT&T for around $600. Customers might not pay the full price all in one go (if you're a new customer, you can pick up the iPhone at a reduced price), but over the course of the two years you can rest assured that they do pay $600 for the handset.
Remember that the shipping, advertising, R&D and so on eat into that profit per handset, but even with these variables factored in, Apple is pulling in a tidy profit per handset.
The iPhone 3G S could be the recession-busting pill that Apple was looking for.