In search of the sub-$300 Windows RT tablet

Microsoft says they are coming -- maybe tomorrow?

NEW YORK -- Where are the sub-$300 Windows RT tablets?

It's a question that might not be answered until Friday, when tablet makers finally put them on sale.

During the Windows 8 launch presentation here, Microsoft's corporate vice president of PCs Mike Angiulo said there would be Windows RT tablets for less than $300, although no lower-priced tablets were shown. Some higher prices were mentioned for Intel-based Windows 8 tablets, but Windows RT is based on ARM chips, which are used in most smartphones and tablets.

Microsoft's own Surface RT tablet will start at $499, a premium more in line with the iPad's price. Windows RT tablets and convertible devices are coming from Dell, Asustek and Samsung, and those vendors showed some of their tablet hardware at the Windows 8 event. Lenovo also displayed a Windows RT laptop.

Dell showed the XPS 10 on Windows RT with a detachable keyboard and starts at $499. Samsung showed the Ativ tab, a standalone tablet; Asus had its Vivo Tab RT, which comes with a detachable keyboard starting at $599. Lenovo also showed its Yoga 13 on Windows RT starting at $799, a clamshell device that is actually a touchscreen laptop. (Lenovo also makes an Intel-based Yoga tablet.)

A Lenovo executive in August said the Windows RT tablets could start at $300.

Comparable low-price tablets are selling for $199, such as the 8 GB Google Nexus 7. The larger storage capacity of the three tablets shown at the New York event could justify a much higher price, however. The Dell device has 64 GB of storage, while the Asus has 32 GB and the Samsung has models with 32 GB to 64 GB of storage.

Manufacturers will need to justify the prices of Windows RT tablets above $200, even with greater storage, because the Windows 8 OS with a touchscreen is so new and untried, analysts said Thursday.

Matt Hamblen covers mobile and wireless, smartphones and other handhelds, and wireless networking for Computerworld. Follow Matt on Twitter at @matthamblen or subscribe to Matt's RSS feed. His email address is mhamblen@computerworld.com.

See more by Matt Hamblen on Computerworld.com.

Read more about tablets in Computerworld's Tablets Topic Center.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags mobileMicrosofttabletswirelessAppleNetworkinginteloperating systemsDellsoftwareWindowsLenovohardware systemsMobile/Wireless

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Matt Hamblen

Computerworld (US)
Show Comments

Cool Tech

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?