I still need the reassurance of a familiar brand before it's a real story - Tony Maddox, CNN senior VP
CHINESE SYSTEM BUILDER Lenovo predicts that Windows RT tablets will be up to $300 cheaper than those running Windows 8.
Microsoft's Windows RT is the firm's branding for Windows 8 on ARM based systems and is what the firm has chosen to install on its own Surface tablet. Now Lenovo, one of Microsoft's Windows RT launch partners has said that tablets running Windows 8 will be up to $300 cheaper than x86 based tablets running Windows 8.
David Schmoock, head of Lenovo's North America operations told Bloomberg that Windows RT tablets will be cut-price consumer devices. Schmoock said, "RT will play in consumer and retail at very aggressive price points. It will do well but it's going to be more of a consumer price point play to begin with."
According to Schmoock, Windows 8 tablets will cost between $600 and $700, meaning that Windows RT devices should tip up for aroud $400, in the same ballpark as most Android tablets.
Schmoock's comments are discouraging for both AMD and Intel as both firms will try to win business in the Windows 8 tablet market. While Schmoock cited application compatibility as a strength of Windows 8, Apple's Ipad has shown that compatibility with existing applications isn't needed to generated huge sales.
Intel got more bad news from Schmoock as he claimed that the chipmaker will fail to meet its ultrabook sales targets. Intel expected that ultrabook branded laptops would capture 40 percent of the consumer laptop market in 2012, but Schmoock said that figure is more likely to be between 20 and 25 percent.
If Schmoock's comments turn out to be correct, and given his position in the world's second largest PC maker you would have to say that they carry considerable weight, then AMD and Intel could find that Windows 8 won't deliver the year end sales boost they were hoping for. µ
Sign up for INQbot – a weekly roundup of the best from the INQ