OEM battery VS ODM battery, what’s the difference?—-From a battery engineer

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When discussing about the lithium batteries, we often talking about the OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) and ODM (Original Design Manufacturer).

Understanding the difference between OEM battery and ODM battery is quite crucial for both battery distributors and battery brands in making informed decisions.

As an experienced engineer in lithium battery industry, I present this article delves into the key distinctions between OEM and ODM batteries, exploring their design, manufacturing process, quality control, cost implications, and compatibility with devices.

Let’s start!

What’s the OEM battery?

OEM battery is a battery factory manufacturing the products according to customers’ designs, use customers’ brands.

Nowadays electric passenger car companies are generally involved in the design and manufacturing of battery Packs: such as, in the early days, Tesla sourced cell from Panasonic and completed the design of battery module and battery pack; BMW X1 hybrid chose to source CATL’s VDA  module, and the BMS used Preh’s hardware products; Azera chose CATL’s VDA Module and LECU, while the BMU was developed in-house. Electric commercial vehicle companies are more inclined to clarify the requirements through the output of SOR, and then obtain the battery system that can be delivered and used.

OEM batteries are known for their high quality and reliability. The related intellectual property rights is hold by customs themselves.

They are produced under stringent quality control processes to ensure they meet the safety and performance standards set by the original manufacturer.

This includes aspects like the right size, appropriate energy capacity, and built-in safety features like temperature sensors or circuit protection mechanisms. These batteries are often more expensive than aftermarket alternatives, but they offer the assurance of optimal functionality and longevity, reducing the risk of damage to the device or performance issues.

What’s the ODM battery?

ODM battery is a battery designed and manufactured by a factory specializing in lithium battery technology, which is then branded and sold by other companies.

ODM battery are distinct from OEM battery in that they provide complete design and manufacturing services, allowing client companies to sell these batteries under their own brand names.

This arrangement is particularly advantageous for companies that want to offer high-quality batteries without investing in their own R&D and manufacturing facilities.

ODM batteries are tailored to meet the specific needs of the client company, offering a range of customization options in terms of capacity, size, power output, and other technical specifications.

This flexibility allows brands to integrate these batteries into a variety of products, from consumer electronics to EV applications, while ensuring optimal compatibility and performance.

The widespread use of ODM batteries across different industries highlights their importance in the global supply chain.

They enable manufacturers to stay competitive by incorporating the latest battery technologies into their products, often at a lower cost than developing these technologies in-house.

However, reliance on ODMs also introduces certain risks, such as potential supply chain disruptions and varying levels of quality control.

ODM vs OEM battery?

ODM (Original Design Manufacturer) and OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) batteries differ primarily in their development process.

ODM batteries are designed and manufactured by a company that specializes in battery technology. These batteries are then branded and sold by other companies. It can provide a more versatile and cost-effective option in many cases.

OEM offer flexibility and innovation solutions for the companies which have the technology but don’t want to the manufacturing thing, it control the core technology of the battery. 

According to my industry experience, If a battery pack factory only do some ODM orders, earning is actually hard money, in the cell – battery module – battery Pack industry chain, the battery Pack almost no technical barriers, so the profit margin is relatively limited.

Keheng have it’s own battery cell factory and battery pack factory, we realized that we need to update our knowledge and use the latest technology to develop our competitive product type to ensure our customers’ market share and our strength.

AspectODM BatteriesOEM Batteries
Design and ProductionDesigned and manufactured by specialized battery companies, then branded by others.manufactured by specialized battery companies, designed and branded by others.
CustomizationHigh degree of customization to client specifications.Specifically tailored to fit and function with a particular device.
Quality ControlVaries, can be less stringent than OEM.Generally high, adhering to strict manufacturer standards.
CostOften more cost-effective due to economies of scale.Can be more expensive due to brand premium and quality assurance.
CompatibilityBroad compatibility with various devices.Perfect compatibility with specific devices.
Warranty and SupportDepends on the branding company’s policies.Typically includes manufacturer warranty and support.

Conclusion

Ultimately, the choice between OEM and ODM batteries depends on individual requirements and priorities, such as the need for customization, budget constraints, and the value placed on consistency and device integrity.

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