Apple’s Vision Pro Headset Costs Closer to $4,600 With Necessary Add-Ons

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The $1,000 base model of the Surface Laptop 5 comes with only eight gigabytes of memory, but most people are likely to need double that to smoothly run the latest Windows operating system and new apps and games. The model that includes 16 gigabytes costs an extra $500.

Samsung’s new high-end smartphone, the Galaxy S24 Ultra, has a starting price of $1,300. But it’s more realistically a $1,540 phone.

In the last five years, many smartphone makers, including Apple, Google and Samsung, stopped shipping phones with basic accessories like earphones and charging bricks, a shift that increased their profit margins. And in an echo of the way computer makers upsell memory, the base model of a smartphone typically includes a modest amount of data storage that isn’t likely to be enough to hold your photos, videos and apps for the long haul.

First, a quick aside on storage. An average photo takes up five megabytes, according to Samsung. So shooting 3,000 photos would take up roughly 15 gigabytes. Popular mobile games like Fortnite and Final Fantasy VII: Ever Crisis gobble up dozens of gigabytes. On Netflix, each hour of video downloaded for offline viewing takes up about a gigabyte. Long story short, data storage can run out fast, so why get 256 gigabytes when you could spend about $100 more for double that?

Unless you already own accessories to work with your new phone, you’ll have to tack on these extras:

  • $30 for the Samsung charging brick.

  • $40 for a Samsung protective case.

  • $50 for the Samsung wireless earbuds.

  • An extra $120 to get 512 gigabytes to hold more photos and apps. (As of this writing, this data upgrade is free for a limited-time promotion.)

That’s not including the cost of using the phone with a modest wireless phone plan for, say, $70 a month. With wireless service included, the cost of owning this Samsung phone over three years is about $112.77 a month, or $4,060 total.

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