Microsoft Charges OEMs $85 For Each Windows RT Tablet
A VR-Zone informal poll of Microsoft official tablet makers conducted at this year’s Computex edition showed some interesting details about the Windows 8 tablets that will hit the market this year: the licencing price for Windows RT is somewhere between $80 and $95. It way above the $35 price rumored in the first instance and way above the zero costs associated with Google Android.
We have no guarantee that the Windows RT OEMs have disclosed the real licencing fee. Probably many of them have lied about the price, revealing a higher fee. Also, not all the Windows 8 tablet makers will pay the same price for Microsoft’s operating system licencing, as those who sell more products will have considerable cut off prices.
Anyway, with $35 payed for each Windows RT tablet, the slates based on Microsoft’s platform will be more expensive than the Android products that have a similar hardware configuration. Moreover, rumor has it that the Windows 8 tablets might come at prices between $549 and $799, while the premium models will cost as high as $899.
Compared to an Android or Apple tablet, the Windows 8 ARM tablets will come pre-installed with the Office 2013 RT suite, a feature that might somehow justify a bigger price.
Beyond the apps that will come pre-installed on the Windows RT tablets, the customers will also take into consideration the technical specifications of the slates running on Microsoft’s OS. Everyone will compare them directly with the iPad. The ARM tablet makers didn’t had huge success with Android, thus it’s a bit less likely for them to be able to change anything unless they (radically) change something in their construction.
One more time Microsoft starts a new journey with two major handicaps: the lack of applications in Windows Store that are optimized for Windows RT and the price of the tablets. Anyway both these aspects can be radically changed before the Windows RT tablets go on sale.
The Windows RT tablets will be pretty challenging for Microsoft, maybe a challenge even greater than the Nokia bet. Are you be ready to pay extra $80 for a tablet with the specifications similar to an Android slate just because it runs on Windows RT?