While a number of companies have started showing of tablets and laptops running early builds of Windows 8, we haven’t seen a lot of price tags yet. But the folks at ZDNet got their hands on a leaked product roadmap showing possible suggested retail prices for upcoming tablets from Asus.

Price start at $599 and go all the way up to $1299.

Asus Windows 8 roadmap

At the low end of the spectrum you have the Asus Vivo Tab RT TF600T. That’s a 10.1 inch tablet with an NVIDIA Tegra 3 quad-core ARM-based processor and Windows RT software.

Right now it looks like the tablet has a suggested retail price of $599, and Asus will charge $199 more for the optional keyboard docking station that lengthens your battery life, adds extra ports, and gives you a full QWERTY keyboard.

Windows RT is the version of Windows designed to run on devices with ARM chips. It won’t support older Windows apps designed for x86 processors, and it’ll have a stripped down version of Microsoft Office.

If you want the full Windows experience, there’s the Asus Vivo Tab TF810C. That’s a tablet with an 11.6 inch display, an Intel Atom Clover Trail processor, and Windows 8 software. It will have a starting price of $799 and an optional keyboard dock for $199.

The Asus Taichi is the most expensive of the bunch, at $1299. It looks like a laptop, but it actually has two displays, one on each side of the lid. Fold the lid closed and you can use the computer like a tablet. Open it up, and it’s a laptop. Both screens are 1920 x 1080 pixel full HD touchscreen displays.

All three prices seem pretty high when you can pick up an iPad for $499 or an Android tablet for $199. Yes, you can do a lot more with a Windows computer than you can with an iOS or Android device… for now. But a lot of people don’t need to do more.

You can browse the web, watch videos, edit documents, and perform most other basic tasks on an inexpensive tablet with a mobile operating system. So if Asus and other tablet makers expect to sell their Windows models at a premium, they’re probably going to need to come up with a better sales pitch than “those Windows licenses aren’t free.”

Samsung is offering a somewhat better price on its upcoming Series 5 Hybrid tablet. You’ll be able to buy the 11.6 inch Windows 8 tablet for $649, or grab the tablet and an optional keyboard dock for $749.

I also wouldn’t be surprised if we see plenty of companies introduce tablets at or around these prices when Windows 8 and Windows RT launch in October… and lower prices in the following months if sales don’t meet expectations. There was a time when the BlackBerry PlayBook sold for $499 and up… but now you can get one for $199.

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16 replies on “Asus Windows 8, Windows RT tablets to cost $599 to $1299?”

  1. This is madness – you can’t compete with Android tablets (where you can pick up a no-name tablet for under $100 (judging from the ad right on this page) and a Nexus 7 for $200) or the new iPad (which runs from $500-$830) with devices ranging from $600-$1,300 and a much smaller application base. If other companies make this same kind of mistake then you can forget about Windows 8 tablets all together.

    This has to be a joke…

    Running my $150 HP TouchPad (dual booting WebOS and Android 4.0 (thanks to Cyanogenmod 9)) – why would I buy a $1,300 tablet?

  2. With pricing like this both Windows RT and Windows x86 tablets are going to be DOA. They offer nothing at all over any Android tablet or iPad for that matter. Not to mention with the new gen. of ultrabooks having better performance, battery and similar form factor and a lower price there is no need to purchase the x86 variant of this monstrosity.

    1. “They offer nothing at all over any Android tablet or iPad for that matter.”

      You are aware there’s a fairly big difference between mobile OS, which are limited by design and purpose as they’re mainly intended for little more than content consumption, to desktop OS that are intended for productivity and limited only by the hardware they run on?

      These prices are a bit too high but make no mistake that these products offer more than either Android or iOS.

      It’s just a question of how many people are willing to pay that much more for the difference being offered.

      Like some people are willing to pay more for the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 because of the Pen features, which btw is what the Clover Trail Asus Vivo Tab offers too and is larger at 11.6″ but that means the keyboard dock will be easier to type on as well.

      So let’s not exaggerate and suggest there’s no difference but price.

      We can agree though that’s it’s a bit too high for what’s being offered but there’s still a chance these aren’t the final pricings for these products.

  3. If this is true pricing expectation, then RIP Windows. You’re toast. It’s like they’ve been chamber frozen, coming to life and not realizing how much the world has changed. I’m sure MS may have to eat profit and sell their Surface at near Android prices or face extinction.

    1. I doubt it, most companies are still waiting on MS to release Surface prices. This is more likely what happened the last time someone suggested they had pricing and it turned out the company just places random numbers for product place holders in their database and had no idea of the final retail pricing.

      Suggesting Asus would price higher than Samsung is pretty telling as that like practically never happens.

      While the Tegra 3 model shouldn’t cost more than a $100 more than the Asus Transformer models. Mind that unlike the Infinity that the RT model only has a 1366×768 instead of the full HD screen the Infiniti uses. So this is more likely someone’s worst case estimates.

      Though the Taichi may be actually pricey because that’s a Ultrabook range device.

  4. I have the Asus TF700, also known as the Asus Infinity. The specs look really close to the TF600T, except mine runs Android instead of that new frankenstein version of Windows-on-Arm. When I need to run Windows apps, I remote desktop to my home PC, which runs the traditional x86 version of Windows and all the legacy applications. It works great, and I get access to the crunching power of the I7 processor at home without killing my tablet battery life.
    I find the whole concept of Windows RT to be… useless. There’s absolutely no reason I’d use it instead of Android for a docking tablet.
    Oh, and that double sided display on the Taichi? Really? What is the use-case for that?
    Am I just being too harsh? I don’t feel like I’m being overly critical…

    1. Glad remote desktop works great for you. To me it is useless.

      RT is just microsoft’s ipad/android tablet competitor. I imagine you could remote desktop from RT to your i7 too. RT is simply a different tablet os that some people will love compared to the other mobileos. Just like some people like windows phone over android or iphones. They each have their pros and cons.

    2. Android still has a lot of limitations that a desktop OS, even one with stripped down features and support, can still offer more.

      One thing your Infiniti has though is a full HD resolution screen. The Vivo Tab RT will have a good IPS screen but only 1366×768. So aside from some enhancements like 2GB of RAM, it should actually cost them less to make than the Infinity and even with the added cost of Windows RT should then not make it over a $100 more than the Infinity… Given the Vivo Tab RT will come with only 32GB capacity.

      Only the Windows 8, Clover Trail, Vivo Tab should cost noticeably more because it’s 11.6″ instead of 10.1″. 64GB SSD, and adds a WACOM digitizer Pen for added value, but even then the pricing looks a bit too high.

      So I wouldn’t say these are actual final prices…

      1. I can run desktop Linux within Android on my phone and that’s already less-restrictive and more useful.

        Which features were you missing?

        1. You can’t run desktop Linux within Android, Canonical is still working on a version of Ubuntu that will be able to do that but for now you’ll have to run it instead of Android.

          Unless you’re talking about the old Atrix Webtop? That was a limited VM of Ubuntu for running Firefox. It worked but raised power consumption and lowered performance enough that the present Atrix did away with it and instead uses a custom desktop like Android UI, it can’t run desktop Firefox but with Chrome they mostly don’t have to now.

          Thing to realize with Mobile OS are that they are limited by design, they couldn’t run well on limited hardware otherwise.

          Mind ARM has only recently gotten to the point it can possible run a desktop OS well enough to not be noticeably sluggish.

          ARM is still a 32bit processor and is still at the point it only rivals Intel ATOMs and that’s the bottom of the x86 hierarchy.

          Still, desktop Linux on ARM is still limited and hampered in a number of ways and that’s why you don’t yet see wider adoption of desktop Linux on ARM yet. There’s just too much fragmentation and lack of support.

          It’s why it’s newsworthy when there’s an exception, like the Allwinner A10 is well known as being one of the few ARM platforms that openly supports porting of Linux distros.

          Otherwise, you are getting many of the same things that Windows will bring to mobile devices by running a desktop Linux distro.

          It’s mainly the limitations of mobile OS like Android that’s being compared to for mobile devices as that’s what most of them are running now.

          Though for things like DRM support, Windows does have the advantage for dealing with content providers.

  5. I see prices dropping after New Year’s Day, as sales tank.

    The Atom tablets will be up against comparably sized and priced Ivy Bridge Core i3 and i5 ultrabooks, and the ultrabooks aren’t selling well.

    The RT tablets will be dead on arrival. Look for them to be the new $199 special, brand new in the box, from the likes of Woot.

    Apple and the Android vendors will leave the Windows tablets in the dust.

    1. That’s not going to happen. Even if RT tabs are a flop, it’s going to take more than a couple of months for prices to drop that far — six months at least, and that’s in the worst case scenario.

      1. Assuming they actually start that high to begin with… These prices are very dubious given the prices are higher than the increased costs of the systems.

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