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Report: Microsoft Surface Tablet Costs at Least $300 to Make

If Digitimes' information is correct, it is rather unlikely that Microsoft will be selling its highly anticipated Surface tablet for less than $200. The Surface RT hardware is estimated to cost somewhere between $300 and $400. The sources suggest that the "end-price" will be "less than $399".

Previous rumors that Surface will sell for $199 are now more wishful thinking than a likely reality. Selling the hardware more than $100 below the hardware cost, and shouldering all secondary cost would not be unusually aggressive for Microsoft. But it may be segment suicide that will not just affect Microsoft, but also its partners that would have to follow suit and offer $199 tablets as well. In a most aggressive case, Surface RT could be launching for $399, while we believe that a $499 price is much more likely given Microsoft's confidence in its product.

Also, let's remember that Microsoft has no history of severely discounting its product even under heavy pressure. This includes the now-dead Zune music player, which was launched against Apple's iPod, in a similar way as Surface is launched against the iPad, in late 2006.

The x86 version of Surface will be more expensive. The report states that the hardware cost of x86 Surface tablets will be between $400 and $500 and final products may cost somewhere between $500 and $700.

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  • southernshark
    I don't see the RT tablet going anywhere.

    MS should have just focused on the x86 tablets and tried to bring prices under control. MS should not put any money into the RT version and should not waste money on developing software for it.

    Reply
  • kungpaoshizi
    I will buy it, no matter what. I would prefer lower to higher cost. But of course even though I use all of their products and despise Apple because they charge so much for everything, I still call the company Microshaft.
    Reply
  • bllue
    The sweet spot for me would be $299-399 for the RT and $499-699 for Pro. $499 for RT sounds a bit too much I would probably think twice about buying it at that price.
    Reply
  • killerclick
    southernsharkMS should have just focused on the x86 tablets and tried to bring prices under control. MS should not put any money into the RT version and should not waste money on developing software for it.
    Seeing how Microsoft's goal is to kill off desktop Windows as soon as possible, I think the reverse may be more likely.
    Reply
  • duaxx
    If MS really wants to succeed they have to keep the price as low as possible, even if they have to absorb some of the cost (especially for the RT because people will be purchasing from the W8 store). They really should consider pricing the RT at a price that's lower than the iPad
    Reply
  • sch4mmer
    Surface RT is the answer to iPad and Kindle. Surface Pro answers to nobody.
    Reply
  • frombehind
    I'm sorry, can someone please explain to why ANYONE would want the surface... that (while a bit cheaper) CANNOT run x86 programs, and has no established device-specific app base. In case no one noticed, ppl dont spent over 500 bucks on current tablets to read email. The massive app base is the primary selling point of these devices is a sea of similar hardware.

    On the other hand, I am waiting for "the real" tablet with baited breath... I have no issue paying a small premium for the ability to run all my x86 software on what looks to be a decently spec'ed tablet
    Reply
  • bustapr
    i dont really care about any tablets at the moment, but Im sort of following this W8 tablet launch cycle. I really dont know how microsoft expects to succeed in the RT market. If it costs them $300 just to make their own tablet, how much will it cost OEMs who are paying an extra $80. If miscrosoft intends to succeed with W8 RT, they HAVE to sell cheaper than the iPad and so do the OEMs. That also means that if microsoft intends to have OEMs contributing to its success, they have to sell it to OEMs alot cheaper.
    Reply
  • vistaofdoom
    frombehindI'm sorry, can someone please explain to why ANYONE would want the surface... that (while a bit cheaper) CANNOT run x86 programs, and has no established device-specific app base. U most be an apple fan... there will be a surface x86/x64... Dont know the terms? go back to mac.
    Reply
  • CaedenV
    who on earth though the surface RT would be $200? All the rumors I have heard from the first announcement were speculating an entry price of $300, to a 'high end' price of ~$600

    Now, I have been hearing rumors that the new B&N tablet will be $200 and include win8RT. That would be a great feature vs price point for entry level tablets that I think would sell very nicely. But then again it is just a rumor, so take it with a grain of salt. Personally I don't really care for the tablet form factor. I like big phones because I don't expect much so anything it can do is a nice plus, and I like desktops because you can add whatever you want to them; But the whole laptop/netbook/tablet form factor just has too many compromises for me, they are more of a necessary evil.
    Reply