Windows 8 Tablet pricing becomes clearer
I find it interesting that news about mobile devices running Windows 8 seem to concentrate almost exclusively on tablet PCs. Is that because the majority of mobile devices will be touch-based tablets? Or are developers holding back on laptops to highlight products that the Windows 8 operating system has made possible in the Windows ecosystem?
Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer recently mentioned that Microsoft Surface tablets would fall in the $300 to $800 price range. I expect Surface RT devices, that is devices running a version of Windows RT, to be considerably cheaper than Surface Pro devices, which run a full version of the Windows operating system. The main difference between the two? Windows Pro allows the installation and execution of traditional desktop applications, while Windows RT only that of apps made available in the Windows Store.
The price range makes it likely that the Surface RT with 32 Gigabyte of storage will retail for $300 to $400, the 64 Gigabyte version for about $400-500, the Surface Pro 64 Gigabyte version for about $550 to $650, and the Surface Pro with 128 Gigabyte storage for $700 to $799.
Asus' holiday roadmap leaked yesterday to the Internet, and it is interesting to see how the company is pricing its three devices that are powered by Windows 8:
- Asus Vivo Tab RT (TF600T) is offered at a starting price of $599. It is a 10.1" device powered by a Nvidia Tegra 3 quad-core cpu.
- Asus Vivo Tab (TF810C) is offered at a starting price of $799. The 11.6" device is powered by an Intel Atom Z2760 processor.
- Asus Taichi starts at $1299. It features a 11.6 dual Full HD 1920x1080 display that makes notebook and tablet functionality available.
The Vivo devices come without keyboard dock which is separately available for $199. The dock not only adds a physical keyboard to the device but also extra battery power.
Samsung too is preparing devices that it wants to launch on October 26, the day the Windows 8 operating system is officially launching. Two devices have been announced so far.
- Samsung Series 5 is powered by an Atom-based Clover Trail processor and a screen supporting a resolution of 1366x768 and Windows 8 Pro. It will be available starting $649 with 2 Gigabyte of Ram and a 64 Gigabyte solid state drive.
- Samsung Series 7 Slate or Ativ tabs is powered by an Core i5 processor, features a screen supporting 1080p and ships with 4 Gigabyte of memory and a 128 Gigabyte solid state drive. It will be available for $1119.
While it is too early to judge from the numbers provided, it seems likely that most manufacturers will price their RT tablets at around $500 to $700 with the possibility that some undercut that price. Windows 8 Pro tablets on the other hand are offered at a greater price diversity, with low end tablets starting at about $650 and high end tablets at about $1100. That's quite expensive for a tablet if you compare it to comparable tablets powered by iOS or Android.
How much would you pay for a Windows RT or Windows 8 Pro tablet, and what features and specs would you expect from it?Advertisement