ASUS Windows 8 road-map leaked, price is concerning

Pricing of Windows RT products has been a big black hole for some time. Since Microsoft first announced the OS and the initial batch of products were uncovered, we never knew the pricing points for these products. Thanks to ZDnet being able to snag some insider ASUS information, it looks like Windows RT products are not going to be priced to compete and will go head-to-head with low end laptops.

The image you see below outlines three products, starting with the ASUS Vivo Tab RT (runs Windows RT) with the price point of $599, which does not include the dock. The ASUS Vivo Tab, which will run Windows 8, will cost $799, a mere $200 more than the simplified Tab RT. 

The price point is the key here for the Tab RT as it is a new breed of product. Seeing as consumers are price conscious given the economic circumstances, it may be a tough sell when compared to the iPad. Yes, Windows RT may offer more functionality than the iPad but in a game of names, Apple wins.

These prices are not confirmed and could change before launch. Given that the products should be hitting the shelves in about a month, they should be fairly close to the final retail price as component pricing will not change dramatically over the time period before launch.

Source: ZDnet

Report a problem with article
Previous Story

Nokia: free Lumia 920 wireless charging pad for Yahoo workers

Next Story

HP CEO wants more innovative PCs while still aping Apple

69 Comments

Commenting is disabled on this article.

All the reading, I see people comparing the 'actual' selling price of product versus the MFR listed pricing of products.

List price is not the same as what you will see in stores or online sales, so comparing the 'sales' price of today's devices to the 'list' price of one of these devices is just silly.

People are also comparing the CPU in the Atom based tablet to previous Atom based tablets. This is the Cloverfield CPU that is 2x the speed of the Atom CPUs referenced in the other devices, or even the newer incarnation of devices like the W500 with AMD CPUs.

PS The product/pricing information is probably old, considering the Metro terminology used, that Microsoft is trying to get OEMs to clean up before launch.

You don't get a second chance to make a 1st impression. They're going to waste the attention by pricing this stuff too high and there will be a collective dismissal of the entire product line from most consumers. After the fact, they might get a clue but will have lost the huge advantage they currently enjoy from introducing something new. Ugly Betty just doesn't seem to understand that the prettiest girl at the prom is still standing next to them.

At these prices I don't see people flocking over to buy them. If the baseline RT tablets start any higher than $399-499 then I don't see many people choosing to buy them instead of an Android or an iPad. Windows RT won't run any existing Windows users' apps so that's not a selling point. You're starting over.

Obry said,
At these prices I don't see people flocking over to buy them. If the baseline RT tablets start any higher than $399-499 then I don't see many people choosing to buy them instead of an Android or an iPad. Windows RT won't run any existing Windows users' apps so that's not a selling point. You're starting over.

Agree to some extent, except that Windows RT will run a lot of higher end applications that iOS and Android CANNOT run. The limitations of both the OS model and the frameworks, like OpenGL ES leave Android and iPad as big screen Phone OSes, and Windows RT, even without Desktop applications being allowed, is the full OS.

For something people can verify, go find the demo of the Windows RT Unreal 3 engine that is running the full DX9 port from the PC, not a mobile version like Android and iOS. This is where a top down, or desktop class OS makes a big difference in what will be available for Windows RT.

I want to be excited for Windows 8 but everyone just keeps messing it up. Lumia only on AT&T, Windows 8 in general, then these prices. Suddenly that Wii U sounds like a better investment.

$600 for a 64GB RT would be pretty good for me. MS Surface is my first choice then maybe the HP Envy x2 then the ASUS Vivo Tab RT.

32GB versions of RT tablets should be prices for at least $350 to $450

I think the vivo rt tablet will easily cost $400 perhaps $5-600 including the dock, which is about the same as a comparable top of the line android transformer tablet, they basically have the same tegra internals. here in the uk the transformer pad costs £399 including dock that roughly translates to $650, but we pay more on tax so I rounded down to $600

Am I looking at this wrong? Cant I just get a nice netbook like the Acer AO756 with Windows 8 and Office for cheaper? No there is no touch screen, but who gives damn if I can save $800. Someone explain the logic to me, i am not being sarcastic!

You're not the only one. Especially when the x86 tablet version is running on an atom processor. Those are not known for their performance

Actually, Windows RT is likely being marketed to a very specific group of audience: We are seeing the default combination of Windows and Office being offered on a more serious mobile business device. What do you think the main reason is for some of the companies to shy away from the iPad? Now, what about a competitive package in terms of computing power based on a more secure (relatively speaking) Windows RT environment with Office integrated plus a super slim removeable keyboard that costs half of a regular corporate laptop!

I'm not sure about being able to run just Office (out of all the other PC apps you might need) qualifying as serious business device.

ichi said,
I'm not sure about being able to run just Office (out of all the other PC apps you might need) qualifying as serious business device.

No, but office is a pretty big deal, so it gives it a headstart against others.

We need to remember that to Microsoft, it's main rival isn't Android, but Apple since the iPad has most of the market.

Just looked at Best Buy's site. A 15.6"(1366 x 768) notebook with celeron, 2 GB of memory, dvd burner, windows 7 home premium, and 320 GB drive: $279.99 non-refurbished. I was expecting this $ class of machines to be replaced.

Netbooks are just as expensive as notebooks too, but you're paying for the form factor. Although, the Nexus 7 is actually very good for the price in comparison.

NXTwoThou said,
Just looked at Best Buy's site. A 15.6"(1366 x 768) notebook with celeron, 2 GB of memory, dvd burner, windows 7 home premium, and 320 GB drive: $279.99 non-refurbished. I was expecting this $ class of machines to be replaced.

That's slightly different though, it gets more expensive as devices get smaller if they keep the same specifications since you have to fit the same power in a smaller form factor. That laptop will have a crappy TFT panel, not an IPS panel. It's got a celeron in it and I'm also assuming these have SSD's inside as well, that 320gb hard drive will be a dirt cheap 5200 rpm jobby.

I would say that asus could do with taking $100 off the two tablets and $100 off the dock price though.

Launch prices for Asus are always inflated, it's not like Google Nexus or Apple who keep the price the same for the entire lifespan. I think there will be a few devices that will be cheaper than the ipad. There is a lot of work going into these Windows 8 tablets and it would be stupid if no one aimed for the under $500 price range.

- Kaboose - said,
yes, if you are wondering, MS are complete morons, who know nothing about nothing. what a waste of time!

This is asus, their stuff is generally more expensive than others OEMs, I'm still hopeful on pro tablets, since it replaces my laptop as well.

thealexweb said,
Microsoft's tablet ambitions have just sunk slightly

Very slightly considering it's an OEM setting these prices, not Microsoft. Plenty of Android tablets out there well over the $199 price range too.. including one by ASUS for about the same price as this.

If this is any indication of the price of Surface, then it'll be DOA. Who in their right mind would pay these kinds of prices? The Nexus 7 and the iPad are much more attractive options.

simplezz said,
The Nexus 7 and the iPad are much more attractive options.

If all you're wanting is an OS designed for a phone, sure. If you're wanting to run the exact same software on all your devices, not so much.

An RT device, with no support of virtually any x86 program written until now, with only support for the new winRT apps, with a lo-res 768p screen (this is lo-res in 2012), cannot cost more than $500, dock included. If they do, forget about my money - and they just lost millions of consumers, since I guarantee you there's millions who think the exact same way I do. The Atoms should top at $700, dock included - it's already dangerously close to an i3 powered laptop.

Xabier Granja said,
An RT device, with no support of virtually any x86 program written until now, with only support for the new winRT apps, with a lo-res 768p screen (this is lo-res in 2012), cannot cost more than $500, dock included. If they do, forget about my money - and they just lost millions of consumers, since I guarantee you there's millions who think the exact same way I do. The Atoms should top at $700, dock included - it's already dangerously close to an i3 powered laptop.

Exactly. How can they convievably price an Atom tablet + keyboard at pennies short of $1000? You could get a core i5 laptop for that, let alone i3.

You lot are delusional to expect an x86 tablet to be priced anywhere lower than $800. These are ultrabook specs after all.
Edit: only the Taichi is mentioned here (that has a double sided display). Any news on the Transformer Book?

georgevella said,
You lot are delusional to expect an x86 tablet to be priced anywhere lower than $800. These are ultrabook specs after all.
Edit: only the Taichi is mentioned here (that has a double sided display). Any news on the Transformer Book?

The x86 tablet here is running an Atom chipset. Last time I checked that is nowhere near Ultrabook specs. And last year you could find x86 Windows 7 tablets for $600 (check the Acer W500), so unless the price of Windows 8 has gone up by about $200 these prices are just a rip off.

efjay said,

The x86 tablet here is running an Atom chipset. Last time I checked that is nowhere near Ultrabook specs. And last year you could find x86 Windows 7 tablets for $600 (check the Acer W500), so unless the price of Windows 8 has gone up by about $200 these prices are just a rip off.


The W500 you mentioned runs a processor similar to the Atom (less powerful). The $200 difference is attributed probably to the fact that its a new product. The Taichi is probably a Core i3 or Core i5 product with that weird ass screen, hence the seriously high price.

Either way these prices are in the range I was expecting: $500 to $600 RT tablets, $800 upwards for x86 tablets, anything less and I would be thinking that they've cut corners somewhere.

georgevella said,

The W500 you mentioned runs a processor similar to the Atom (less powerful). The $200 difference is attributed probably to the fact that its a new product. The Taichi is probably a Core i3 or Core i5 product with that weird ass screen, hence the seriously high price.

Either way these prices are in the range I was expecting: $500 to $600 RT tablets, $800 upwards for x86 tablets, anything less and I would be thinking that they've cut corners somewhere.

Just being a new product doesnt account for the price difference. The Acer came with a keyboard as well so the final cost of the Asus is double the Acer without any real justification if you classify the two chips used in the same class. There really doesnt seem to be anything that would warrant such a high price for the Atom tablet, especially when you consider the Taichi is only $300 more but has 2 1080p screens and runs a full core ix processor and has double the memory.

georgevella said,
You lot are delusional to expect an x86 tablet to be priced anywhere lower than $800. These are ultrabook specs after all.

Wait, Ultrabooks have atom cpu's? Because that $800 x86 tablet is atom powered.

Perhaps that 600$ is for a 64 GB version, which means that it'd cost the same as a 64 GB transformer prime. I don't see much of a problem here.

P.S. Not to mention it has office 2013 pre-loaded.

I like how some people are comparing these with Nexus 7 and iPad. MS is creating a whole new form factor to replace your iPad/Nexus 7 and laptop combined. Comparing this to half-ass technology is criminal.

You're so wrong - the Windows RT OS and hardware are similar and comparable to those. Only the Windows 8 Pro tablets are something special, since they're compatible with all existing Windows applications.

They have nobody but themselves to blame if they don't sell at those prices.

I can see the need for slightly higher prices when Microsoft gets a slice with the OS, how much is that anyway ?

I think you'll see a lot more of this from OEM's. They know consumers will think RT is new Windows just like before so the price might work for unaware buyers looking for a new PC. You can just imagine them saying, look it has the same desktop and the fancy new start screen but 200 bucks less than that other one.

Paul Thurrott already said a month ago that the entire range of third-party RT devices (all that are not the Surface RT) would be selling within the iPad's price range ($499-829). I still don't understand why everyone is shocked when these "leaks" indicate what we've already known since August.

A product that gives you better os and functionality, includes office 2013(productivity) and will have all round better hardware and you mean to say its no competitive and has no name to it?(ahem Windows).. Please... they dont need to be dirt cheap to compete.

Yeah... it's not the name, but rather the app ecosystem that sells the tablet. Guess what? Windows RT is second class compared to iOS and Android so there you have it.

a1ien said,
Yeah... it's not the name, but rather the app ecosystem that sells the tablet. Guess what? Windows RT is second class compared to iOS and Android so there you have it.

Give it a couple of months. Windows Apps and Windows developers put the iOS App store to shame rather easily.

Factor in that Windows RT is a rather easy port from existing Applications and also remember that Windows RT has OS functionality that iOS and Android can't provide, so you will see full versions of software than simply cannot run on iOS or Android.

Windows RT can do XBox 360 quality graphics on a tablet, and iOS and Android are still at Angry Birds and offering 3D games that are still trying to get the textures and polygons in a scene up to what was on the original XBox. That is a massive leap in technological difference.

The Taichi actually looks reasonable, coming with two full HD screens. The others though, are ridiculous especially when you add the keyboard to the cost. The Atom based Vivo tablet rounds out to $1000 all included, that is insane. Laptop pricing for an Atom tablet? Must have forgotten their meds.

It's frustrating that they're charging $200 (the same as a nexus 7 or kindle fire) for just the dock/keyboard. Who the hell is buying this?

I'm wondering if this is all MSRP ?
if this is the list price they are probably going to sell it for 100 dollars cheaper in like best buy etc..

ASUS has always had higher prices though. This is expected with their higher quality hardware. I'm sure the other OEMs will have lower prices.

Dot Matrix said,

How does that relate with laptop hardware?

It relates perfectly with the listed Visio Tab RT at a whopping $599 (THREE times the price of the Nexus 7!)

Sonne said,

It relates perfectly with the listed Visio Tab RT at a whopping $599 (THREE times the price of the Nexus 7!)

I still don't see the connection. I'm getting a full blown OS, not to mention Office, with full blown hardware with the Visio Tab RT, compared to a bona fide e-reader with the Nexus.

Dot Matrix said,
I'm getting a full blown OS

Exactly why I'm interested in one. (Welllll probably not one of these, another manufacturer) Running the exact same OS and software as my desktop systems versus what was designed for a phone? Hrmmm let me think about that for a few..

Dot Matrix said,

I still don't see the connection. I'm getting a full blown OS, not to mention Office, with full blown hardware with the Visio Tab RT, compared to a bona fide e-reader with the Nexus.

No you are not, you are getting the same hardware as an Asus Transformer TF300T, which costs $350, and then tacking on $250 for Windows RT and Office. Unless by "full blown hardware" you mean "Asus Transformer with Windows installed"

I don't personally see the comparison to the Nexus 7 but yeah Windows RT is not the full blown version of Windows 8 and won't run the same as your desktop. It'll be comparable but def, not the same. I hate to say it but if these are the prices we are going to see then some of these RT tablets are already slated for failure.

I can see people opting for the W8 version but even then I don't think they are going to want to shell out a grand. Just look at how well the Ultrabooks sold when they hit. All you are really adding in here is a touch screen. They need the RT version to come in sub $599 with dock and the W8 version to come in sub $800.
err - just realized the x86 version was with an Atom and not the i3 or i5. At these prices they are going to be hard pressed to make a dent in the tablet market. They might ding a few doors in the laptop market but they are just going to cannibalize ultrabook sales if anything.

Sonne said,

It relates perfectly with the listed Visio Tab RT at a whopping $599 (THREE times the price of the Nexus 7!)

Shouldn't we be comparing the 10" Asus Vivo (Windows) to the 10" Asus Transformer (Android) and not the Nexus 7?

@mac said,

No you are not, you are getting the same hardware as an Asus Transformer TF300T, which costs $350, and then tacking on $250 for Windows RT and Office. Unless by "full blown hardware" you mean "Asus Transformer with Windows installed"

And you skip right over the part about the 'full blown' OS, and that is a bigger difference than the hardware. No matter how impressive hardware is, unless the OS offers the technology to fully utilize it, it is worthless.

Take Windows RT and the Unreal or Havok game engine demonstrations. They are the 'full version' of the gaming engine because it is the 'full blown' OS, and not a sad phone based OS running on a bigger screen. The Unreal 3 engine is a 'mobile' and reduced feature version on Android and iOS, yet running on rather 'equal' hardware to Windows RT, is able to do far more impressive graphics with the 'full engine'. Go look up the demos.

Even having the same level of hardware is irrelevant, when the Windows RT device can run the FULL Office applications, not slow or crazy versions. Other developers also have the ability to provide their products with a revised UI on Windows RT, and thus other big name software can run on Windows RT, that it technically CANNOT on iPad or Android due to OS limitations.

thenetavenger said,

And you skip right over the part about the 'full blown' OS, and that is a bigger difference than the hardware. No matter how impressive hardware is, unless the OS offers the technology to fully utilize it, it is worthless.

Take Windows RT and the Unreal or Havok game engine demonstrations. They are the 'full version' of the gaming engine because it is the 'full blown' OS, and not a sad phone based OS running on a bigger screen. The Unreal 3 engine is a 'mobile' and reduced feature version on Android and iOS, yet running on rather 'equal' hardware to Windows RT, is able to do far more impressive graphics with the 'full engine'. Go look up the demos.

Even having the same level of hardware is irrelevant, when the Windows RT device can run the FULL Office applications, not slow or crazy versions. Other developers also have the ability to provide their products with a revised UI on Windows RT, and thus other big name software can run on Windows RT, that it technically CANNOT on iPad or Android due to OS limitations.

To me that does not make it worth it while the great replacements there already are on iPad and Android.

I don't buy a tablet to game, if I want to do that I use my desktop. It can run Unreal @ 400,000FPS, I don't care. I buy a tablet to be productive while mobile, and Pages/Keynote/Google Docs allows me to do that just fine with no problems so far. What need is there to pay an extra $250 to use office when Google Docs is free and Pages is $20? Windows RT, or even if it came with Windows 8, just does not offer enough over the current offerings for me to care about it.

I can see that MAYBE having 'full blown' Outlook might be worth it to REALLY heavy email users. Short of that its just adding things that I will never use I can remote to my desktop from my iPad to use Windows on my tablet, but I don't, why? Because it offers me nothing.

Edited by AltimaXP, Sep 18 2012, 2:11pm :

Agreed. If they're going to try and steal market share from Apple. The price can't just be competitive. It has to be significantly lower.

krasch said,
Agreed. If they're going to try and steal market share from Apple. The price can't just be competitive. It has to be significantly lower.

If every device that is released with RT is competitively priced with the iPad, they'll collectively steal a lot of market share. I'd love to get my hands on a device that's significantly cheaper but I doubt that'll happen. People will just start buying these tablets because it's Windows. When someone walks in the doors of a Best Buy or similar looking for a tablet or notebook, they'll see these and most likely pick a tablet/hybrid over the iPad. Windows is huge and has been around forever. People see the same and/or logo and know it's good. I can't say the same for those who actually do all their research or already own an iPad. I can see Microsoft coming in and dominating the tablet space in under 3 years, easily.

krasch said,
Agreed. If they're going to try and steal market share from Apple. The price can't just be competitive. It has to be significantly lower.

Does every Android phone cost significantly less than an iPhone? Why does every PC have to be "significantly" lower than an iPad?

I don't think Windows is just going to take market share, it's going to take most of the market the same way Android did in phones. Some will be cheaper, some will be same price, and some will be more expensive, but the platform will be ubiquitous and widely supported by all manufacturers.

Agreed^2, because when the iPhone launched, feature phones were so expensive. Apple priced the iPhone way below feature phones and grabbed up all the market share. Even today, the iPhone is cheaper than the competition and Apple is obviously doing well. Shame on Asus (err...Microsoft)! Have you not learned anything from Apple?

krasch said,
Agreed. If they're going to try and steal market share from Apple. The price can't just be competitive. It has to be significantly lower.

I have to disagree. The iPad is a limited Tablet with a limited OS.

Windows 8, even RT, is a full desktop OS model. This is why the Unreal Engine on Windows RT is the full version and not a limited MOBILE variant like on the iPad or Android tablets.

When people see a Windows RT Tablet doing things neither Android nor the iPad can do, they won't make their decision based on 'cheaper'.

Also the psychology of pricing and marketing works in reverse. Often marking 'up' prices, invokes the notion of 'better/quality' and users will buy the more expensive product as long as it is not crazy overpriced.

Apple has done this for years, and you will see people scream and defend any Apple product as being higher quality and better made, when there is no factual basis to the argument. It is because they cost a 'bit' more than their PC counterparts that people believe Macs/iPads are 'better made/quality/features'.

Part of Android's problem is from Tablets that are too cheap, as people assume they are not real competitors to the iPad and never consider them. Subsidized devices sold as color ebook readers are the only exception to this rule.

krasch said,
Agreed. If they're going to try and steal market share from Apple. The price can't just be competitive. It has to be significantly lower.

Why? a Win8 tablet (even the WinRT versions) are in a completely different league to the iPad, they can't be priced the same. They are essentially a fully functional PC in terms of power and capability while in the form factor of a tablet, while the iPad is a dumbed down appliance (in comparison).

Anyway price has never been a major issue, look at Apple! they charge what they want and people beg them to take their money. Give people something they can't live without (or at least convince them of that) and they'll come in masses throwing money at you. That is my 2 cents, take with a grain of salt.

krasch said,
Agreed. If they're going to try and steal market share from Apple. The price can't just be competitive. It has to be significantly lower.

I simply disagree. for RT version you might be right but for other versions hey it's a freaking laptop. you can run anything on it. can you do that with ipad? can you use photoshop? office? other cool software?