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Motorola's XOOM Tablet To Cost $799; Wi-Fi Requires 3G Activation? 429

Posted by Soulskill
from the screen-better-be-made-out-of-dilithium dept.
WrongSizeGlass writes "The price of Motorola's XOOM Tablet has been leaked in a Best Buy ad. The $799 Android 3-enabled tablet will be available starting Feb 24th. Though the price may seem a bit high, the most surprising detail is that activating the Xoom's Wi-Fi will require signing up for at least one month of Verizon's 3G service. Let's hope the fine print in the Best Buy ad turns out to be a typo."
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Motorola's XOOM Tablet To Cost $799; Wi-Fi Requires 3G Activation?

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  • The $799 Android 3-enabled tablet will be available starting Feb 24th.

    Wat

    That is not a bit high, given that an already shipping competitor is priced at 629.

    • by caywen (942955) on Monday February 07, 2011 @07:59PM (#35132106)

      Psychologically, that price is way high. There's a reason Apple wanted to target a $499 price point with the iPad. I think once they start getting into the mid-range laptop price range, it becomes a different kind of purchasing decision. At least, that's the reaction I've had as well as a few others I know. We were pretty excited about the Xoom, but once it comes time to lay down $800+, it stops being an impulse buy.

      I hope this does not start an upward trend in price for tablets. Large-ish android phones will easily cannibalize its big brothers if the price differential is that great.

      • by Protonk (599901) on Monday February 07, 2011 @08:07PM (#35132196) Homepage

        Right. 799 is a low end of the estimates people had for the iPad last year. Now that flash memory and display technologies have had about 12 months to mature from the introduction of the ipad, prices for competitors should at least be lower than Apple's price point for the low end 3G ipad. I don't think it is completely fair to judge the XOOM against the wifi ipad since I think all of the XOOMs will have 3g, but 150 dollars more than Apple is nuts.

        • by peragrin (659227) on Monday February 07, 2011 @08:13PM (#35132274)

          That's right apple always overcharges for a premium and over price their gadgets anyways.

          However Since the xoom is $150 more than the similar ipad maybe people should stop assuming that apple overcharges for hardware. To Date not one tablet competitor has been able to meet apple's price point by a significant margin. The galaxy Tab is close but then again it has a 3" smaller screen.

          • I'm not familiar with your math.

            32GB 3G iPad is $730. The 32GB 3G Xoom is $800. I'm not seeing a $150 difference.

            • by rsilvergun (571051) on Monday February 07, 2011 @08:43PM (#35132578)
              See here [youtube.com] for a complete explanation.
          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by amiga3D (567632)

            It's starting to look like Apple has set the bar too high for it's competitors in the pad market. Everything is starting to look like cheap junk or else it has problems with costing about what the iPad does or even more. For once it seems that Apples price point may actually not be massively outrageous as usual. Also all the guys with droid phones at work are starting to notice that the guys who have iphones have systems that work smoother. A couple have even stated they plan to get an iphone as soon as

            • People forget that before the iPad came out a lot of analysts predicted a retail price of $800 up to $1000 USD. It's priced pretty aggressively.

            • by RogerWilco (99615)

              Apple is doing what it has always been doing.

              The reason that Apple is fairing better in the phone, mp3 player and tablet market, is because those are closer to the appliance philosophy that Apple has always had then what we call the traditional PC market.

              I might sound as a bit of a fanboy and maybe I have become one, but I only own a Mac since three years, although I occasionally used them for nearly 15. Apple never was a technical innovator, but in design and concept they have been way ahead of everyone e

          • "That's right apple always overcharges for a premium and over price their gadgets anyways."

            But do they include a bait-and-switch?

            All I see here is concern for the register price for these tablets, not the fact that one month of Verizon service is also a 2 year service contract. Does anyone really expect VERIZON, of all companies, to go through the rigmarole of signing people up just for one months fees? Last I did business with them, they signed me up for another year of contact when I simply asked for a pa

        • by darjen (879890)

          I don't think it's nuts. It's only $70 more than the 32gb 3g ipad. And it's got faster hardware and dual cameras. Pretty comparable imho.

      • by Enderandrew (866215) <enderandrew@g m a il.com> on Monday February 07, 2011 @08:17PM (#35132322) Homepage Journal

        I had really hoped the price would be closer to $500, but if we're comparing apples to Apples, then the iPad isn't $500.

        This is a 3G + Wifi 32GB model. So the comparable iPad is $730. The Xoom is $70 more, has 4 times the RAM, two HD cameras, a SD slot, and a dual-core processor.

        And I keep hearing stories how the average iPad purchase was over $800 with accessories. So the price is high, but not ridiculously high.

        That being said, Motorolla needs to offer a base model (Wifi only) for under $600 if they want to compete.

        • by MBCook (132727)

          But how many iPad customers are buying the top end model?

          You can spend that much on an iPad, but I'd expect the average sale price is supposed to be below the price of the 3G model, which would put it under $630. It was in one of their recent SEC filings, I think.

          It's much easier to say "I want a $500 iPad", and "but I should probably get a 3G just incase.... and my music collection is already 12GB so..." than to start with "I want an $800 thing" when you can quickly go to "I can buy a real laptop or desk

        • That being said, Motorolla needs to offer a base model (Wifi only) for under $600 if they want to compete.

          Yeah, and BMW needs to offer an $18,000 Rolls Royce minivan if it wants to compete...

        • by exomondo (1725132)

          That being said, Motorolla needs to offer a base model (Wifi only) for under $600 if they want to compete.

          Only if they want to compete in the wifi-only market, which - unless you're a complete idiot - it's obvious they don't. And in any case *if* the Xoom happened to be better than an ipad they don't have to price it at ipad prices at all to be competitive.

    • How do you think they're going to recover the cost of that super bowl commercial?

      and all of those white hoodies?

    • by alcmaeon (684971)
      Don't be absurd. This price is not high. It's LOW. Too low, in fact. Google fanboys will flock to this product. They will beg to spend their money on it. They will bow down and lick the boots of Google, do a goat.se, and beg to have Google suck their cash and souls straight out their their gaping anuses. They want their product to win, win, win. Who cares if it is an inferior, over-priced, me-too kludge. But, hey, it'll run Flash, right?
  • At this rate (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anubis350 (772791) on Monday February 07, 2011 @07:53PM (#35132032)
    The iPad2 is going to murder the flagship Android tablets... shame, I really want an Android tablet, But give a wifi only version in the same price range as the wifi iPad! I only need to pay for one bloody data connection, and I already have one on my phone!
    • Re:At this rate (Score:5, Informative)

      by Gravatron (716477) on Monday February 07, 2011 @07:57PM (#35132080)
      I think the eeepad transformer, also a honeycomb tablet, was shooting for a $400 price range. Which is about all I'm willing to spend on one.
    • You're basically right for what they have out in the US (that I know of). The thing is there are some really really nice Android tablets available here in Japan. The Galapagos tablet by Sharp is gorgeous and also has a smart phone version with a 3D display (no glasses required): http://www.sharp.co.jp/mediatablet/product/home/index.html [sharp.co.jp] . I think it's going to be released in the US, but I'm not sure. As for actual performance I've tried out both the iPad and the Galapagos and I personally found the Galapago
    • by NitroWolf (72977)

      The iPad2 is going to murder the flagship Android tablets... shame, I really want an Android tablet, But give a wifi only version in the same price range as the wifi iPad! I only need to pay for one bloody data connection, and I already have one on my phone!

      I doubt it's going to murder them, but it will probably be wildly successful... I also suspect it's going to be the last wildly successful product out of Apple for a long time, unless Jobs comes back. The problem with Apple, even with Jobs at the helm at this point, is that people are starting to realize how limited the Apple OS's are. That's both a good and a bad thing for Apple, but it's going to stunt their growth going forward unless they do something drastic. It's good from the standpoint that the p

      • Re:At this rate (Score:4, Insightful)

        by romanval (556418) on Monday February 07, 2011 @10:30PM (#35133430)

        I think this is a function of the fact that there are more peripherals for Apple now, so there's more things to break. When the "It just works" campaign started, there was hardly anything available that wasn't Apple produced, so yeah, things "Just worked" in most instances, but you had an extremely limited choice of what you could use. Now that Apple products have a larger ecosystem, they are running into the same problems as PCs... and thus the migration away from the Apple price premiums for basically no benefit.

        On the flip side, the non-tech people are liking the Apple garden as much or more than before, because iOS is very gentle and easy for the non-tech savvy; they have no need for flexibility and the large icons and limited customizability of the whole thing is perfect for them.

        So no, I doubt the iPad 2 is going to murder the Android tablets in terms of functionality, usability, price or any other technical metric. I don't see iOS having any significant changes between now and the advent of the iPad 2. The latest iterations of Android absolutely destroy iOS in terms of usability, speed, stability, flexibility and visual interface.

        You forget how apple products are designed: It's the lack of features that's a feature, especially for the common (non-techie) crowd that wants a online device that's as simple to use as an appliance (like a toaster or a TV).

        The whole "walled garden" aspect is irrelevant as long as the device does what most people want.

        As for iOS fragmentation; there's only 3 iOS devices being shipped (iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad) with only a few variations between them.... A hell of a lot less fragmented then Android will ever be.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by gig (78408)

        People don't see iOS as limited since it does more things than any other mobile OS, and with less training and computer knowledge required. Other mobile systems do not even have native C apps, let alone the sheer number that Apple has. Not sure if you are including the Mac in your judgement, but since it has a full Unix and by far the best creative platform I don't see how it could be called limited in any way.

      • by RogerWilco (99615)

        I only switched to Mac 3 years ago. I used Linux before that, and Windows before that.

        To simply get work done and have stuff "just work", Apple still offers one of the best, if not the best product out there.

        I find it's not the really tech savvy people who go back to Windows, but those that though they knew a thing or two, but basically new only a few more tricks than the basic non-tech population. The techies in my environment really relish the Unix core, once they adapt, and all the power and transparency

    • by eggoeater (704775)
      You can get the Galaxy tab from verizon for $499 with no contract. That's cheaper than the iPad with way more features, and you can always sign up for a 3G data plan later if you want one. I love my Galaxy tab and have been really impressed with the screen quality and touch sensitivity. Great camera too.
  • the tablet will be rooted in less than 24 hours.

    I predict that this will be the first android device to exceed 75% of all devices rooted and a non crippled version of the OS installed.

  • Typos (Score:3, Insightful)

    by mariasama16 (1895136) on Monday February 07, 2011 @07:56PM (#35132066)
    Considering the number of typos in the ad itself (octivative or activative), I'll wait until an official announcement of the price (or until it starts selling).
    • For Moto's sake, I sure hope so.
      With this pricing and wifi policy, it would probably go over more like a lead balloon.

      I'm still wondering why Google didn't release a canonical device with the new product category like the G1, Nexus and Nexus-S. That would have set the bar appropriately high enough so that at least the Android/Honeycomb brand wasn't harmed by this kind of leak (even if it's not true, the damage is done).

      • With this pricing and wifi policy, it would probably go over more like a lead balloon.

        And if it has Moto's traditional ROM lockdown I'll definitely keep my wallet in my pocket this time round.

        Looking forward to the coming influx of better/cheaper/freeer Android pads on the way. A 10 inch Archos with a decent screen would do the trick for me.

    • Considering the number of typos in the ad itself (octivative or activative), I'll wait until an official announcement of the price (or until it starts selling).

      Actually I misread the title... I only came here looking for an XCOM tablet.

  • Damn... (Score:2, Informative)

    by lolololol (1991780)
    Why can't we get some decent competition for the iPad? The iPad2 will probably be released around the same time, or shortly after, and be the same price as the current iPad, blowing this out of the water.
    • Re:Damn... (Score:4, Insightful)

      by UnknowingFool (672806) on Monday February 07, 2011 @08:26PM (#35132420)
      Maybe because manufacturing a touch screen device with at least a 10" screen, with some of the capabilities of a computer, and with the ability to communicate via Wifi or cellular 3G is a bit harder and more costly than most people realize. If I were to guess the hardest component to procure probably was the 10" screen. If I know Apple, they locked up the supply a long time ago. For the first iPod, Apple bought out all the tiny HDs that Toshiba made. Every other company had to use either laptop HDs or wait at least a year before Toshiba could produce enough for everyone or for Toshiba's competitors could make a similar product.
    • by linhares (1241614)

      Why can't we get some decent competition for the iPad? The iPad2 will probably be released around the same time, or shortly after, and be the same price as the current iPad, blowing this out of the water.

      Rather sadly, I think you're right. Apple is in on this with guns blazing, and they want to reap the network effects to the max; more users, more apps, rinse repeat. After a threshold, it might become all qwerty: perhaps substandard (one day), but pretty much a system in equilibrium, with market forces unable to enter significantly. Motorola--and google by the way--are really losing the timing with this bending over for the telcos. Sad state of affairs; I was ready and willing to get one.

  • FFS.. there are several typos in what is supposed to be a "print ad"...

  • by Super Dave Osbourne (688888) on Monday February 07, 2011 @08:01PM (#35132118)
    on this and other devices in this range of price. When the prices come down to 300-400 for such a large panel and full computer functionality including netbook stuff like external monitor and keyboard hookup, then I'm going to buy one... Until then, its sidelines for me and I suspect many others.
    • Re:Simple pass... (Score:4, Informative)

      by JesseDegenerate (936699) on Monday February 07, 2011 @11:34PM (#35133870)
      technically even an ipad can do what you just said. (connect to a external display (via dock to component, composite, vga or HDMI adapter) with an external bluetooth keyboard.) just so ya know.
      • iPad's external display dongle isn't a persistent video-out, apps must be written to send video-out. Not sure what special thing Apple uses for Jobs' demos that show the home screen and everything on the screen, but we the public don't have access to it.

  • by mveloso (325617) on Monday February 07, 2011 @08:09PM (#35132230)

    You know it's bad when even Moto can't get enough volume to beat the iPad on price.

    Let's see:

    Apple: I want to buy 45 million IPS screens. Oh, and can you throw in 45 million pieces of 32gb of flash, a bunch of components like batteries etc? And be sure to give us a good price, since we're basically going to be making you rich for the next 5 years if everything goes right.
    Supplier CEO: sure, here's my private line. iI you need anything, even a Big Mac or a foot massage we'll send it right over.

    Everyone else: I'm making a tablet, and am looking at around 50k pieces to start
    Supplier sales rep: uh, I'll get back to you once we're done with this Apple order. Have you tried tier 3 manufacturer around the block? Tier 2 is busy, since we're subcontracting their excess capacity.

    • by UnknowingFool (672806) on Monday February 07, 2011 @08:33PM (#35132480)
      Or it could have gone this way:
      (1 year ago)
      Apple: We like the 10" screen you make; we'd like to buy out all of them for the next year.
      Supplier CEO: Ka-Ching!

      (6 months ago)
      Everyone else: Hey we'd like to make a small order for 10" screens. We've looked at the market and yours is the only one that's ready for production and has our price point.
      Supplier CEO: We're all sold out. Sorry.
      Everyone else: $&^%!
      • by sootman (158191) on Monday February 07, 2011 @10:29PM (#35133418) Homepage Journal

        Actually, it was five years ago, and it did go this way: [macworld.com]

        On the operational side of the house, as you probably remember, we've historically entered into certain agreements with different people to secure supply and other benefits. The largest one in the recent past has been, we signed a deal with several flash [memory] suppliers back in the end of 2005 that totaled over a billion dollars, because we anticipated that flash would become increasingly important across our entire product line and increasingly important to the industry. And so we wanted to secure supply for our company.

        —Tim Cook, Apple COO

        That's just one example. I'm pretty sure they did the same for screens and lots of other important bits. Steve Jobs gets all the press but Mr. Cook is definitely pulling his weight.

  • Ever since the Samsung Galaxy Tab looked like priced way to high I have had a theory: They just fear to have their tablets to be looked upon as "cheap iPad clones". They think people have learned to think "expensive = good", so they price the things up through the roof. And then there's the fear of the death spiral downwards, with razor-thin margins and high volume sales with no profits.

    But have no fear: There's an armada of cheap chinese tablets coming. Not really fast and not really good, but fast and goo

    • by jjohnson (62583)

      They think people have learned to think "expensive = good", so they price the things up through the roof.

      This is a good point, but what the manufacturers are missing is that the "expensive = good" equation adheres to the brand, not the product. This price point just makes Motorola look incompetent at controlling costs.

    • by node 3 (115640) on Monday February 07, 2011 @11:36PM (#35133886)

      Ever since the Samsung Galaxy Tab looked like priced way to high I have had a theory: They just fear to have their tablets to be looked upon as "cheap iPad clones". They think people have learned to think "expensive = good", so they price the things up through the roof.

      Wait a minute, your theory is that Motorola (and Samsung) deliberately overpriced their tablets in order to get people to think they are better? And that's supposed to be their strategy for a mass market product?

      Doesn't it simply make more sense that they can't build their tablets at a price competitive with Apple?

  • by El Royo (907295) on Monday February 07, 2011 @08:38PM (#35132530) Homepage
    On Wednesday we'll find out about HP's new tablets. One thing that will be very important will be the price. I'm hoping that it steers well clear of the $800 mark. As I was telling someone, there are two ways to approach this: One, a low cost device that will be an easy purchase. Two, a device with incredible specs that people are willing to pay a premium for. I honestly think that approach one, while possibly a disappointment to the tech geek crowd, will yield a lot more owners. In any case, I'll be there in SF to hear the announcement!
    • I didn't even know about this so I just looked it up - and realized Palm makes phones? I had some impression the Palm brand was still around, and I knew HP had purchased Palm, but I didn't know they made phones. Keep in mind I live in a country where we don't have phones from Motorola or Blackberry and very very few phones from Samsung either. It really makes me further wonder why the US cell phone market is flooded with crappy phones all running their own proprietary platform - app developers must spend ri
  • Seriously why would I pay for this thing when a 13" $399 notebook will do, with wifi card already installed. I can then choose who ever for my wifi internet. Don't give me that "I want something comfortable on my couch shit", my laptop sits just fine on my arm rest with a wireless mouse.

  • My Droid X can function as a WiFi hotspot, with corresponding service from Verizon. Are they possibly referring to this feature? Otherwise, it seems unlikely that Verizon would be subsidizing the cost of the tablets much for a one-month contract. Also, given that you sync this with a PC, it seems unlikely that a jail-breaking solution is too far off.
  • 250-300 bucks. Reviews say they feel cheap, well f' it they are. Buy 3 keep 2 spares. Of course I thought the iPad would never sell at its cost either.
  • Surely that has to be for some high end iteration of the Xoom, otherwise that thing is doomed. People balked at the iPad's price even with a $499 option, I just cant see this one doing much especially if the 3g activation required part is true. I really dont understand the push for every device to have 3g it almost seems like a conspiracy with the cell phone providers. I have a mifi router with an unlimited play (clear) that is around the same price as the 2gb data plans offered by the major telcos, I ha

  • A lot of people criticized Apple for going with a 4:3 display but in reality it's the better choice for tablets.
  • What the hell are they thinking? Android tablets are coming from behind -- they are not in a position to charge a premium. Oh well, wait for the next one.

    Those sub-$300 Chinese knock-offs are becoming more attractive.

  • by Sarusa (104047) on Monday February 07, 2011 @10:20PM (#35133360)

    Seriously, the iPad has been great, but I'd love more control, real multitasking, and to flush iTunes back down to the depths of Hell it came from.

    You've had a year to catch up and this is the best you can do? And don't say Galaxy Tab -maybe the Tab 2. I really hope this just turns out to be a normal Best Buy/Verizon 'Screw The Early Adopters' thing and it'll get saner as iPad 2 launch approaches.

    Especially the WiFi activation: if true, good god, what foreskin up around his neck executive came up with that one?

  • by jbplou (732414) on Monday February 07, 2011 @10:31PM (#35133444)
    The authors question of if Apple should be blamed for the overpriced Xoom is ridiculous. 1 year ago nobody thought you could create a viable tablet for $500 and Apple created the whole market overnight. Look up articles from January 2010 most of the tech analysts were projecting an Apple tablet for over $1000 some as high as $2000. Apple created the market, there is no excuse for Motorola to overprice. They have big buying power and a third party gave them an OS for orders of magnitude less money than Apple paid to develop iOS.

    If this is the best Android can muster iPad1 will eat its lunch, iPad2 will dominate it if they keep price down. Right now the Playbook looks like stiffer compitition because of the business user sales channel Blackberry has available.

    Xoom +$800 price tag = doa
    • I suppose it depends on what people thought of when they thought of a "viable tablet". Most people assumed to be viable, it had to be a proper computer -- not a giant iPod touch. Turns out giant ipod touch is good enough for most people -- but is the iPad cheap? Hardly. It's expensive for what it ended up being.

      I don't care if it runs Android or iOS or Palm OS or whatever. If it's just going to be a toy for content consumption, then I'm not paying $500 dollars for it -- let alone more. I mean, let's f

      • You sounds like my father when I bought my first home computer in the 80's. Only worried about your needs which are stuck in the past and then trying to project them on others. Now yell at the iPad owners for being in your yard.
  • by DrXym (126579) on Tuesday February 08, 2011 @05:12AM (#35135422)
    There is no reason for any tablet to cost this much. At worst they should cost the same as an iPad. More realistically they should ditch some of the superfluous features (GPS etc.) and concentrate on a functional tablet at more affordable price point.

    Part of me wonders if this isn't some kind of ruse, that they're saying $799 because they'll actually flog it at $499 on some phone plan and people will be dumb enough to think they're getting a bargain. Regardless, it's way, way, too much money.

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