Intel will soon introduce an Android-only Bay Trail chipset in the hopes of powering entry-level Android tablets, according to sources speaking to Digitimes.
These potential slates could be priced as low as $99, the report notes, although Intel is said to have put together a pricing roadmap for Android slates of all sizes. Intel Atom-powered 7-inch Android tablets will reportedly go from $100-$130; 7-to-8-inchers could go from $150 to $200; 8-to-10-inch devices would be $200-250; and even larger slates would be $250 and up. Digitimes‘ sources say those bigger tablets will run on Intel’s Bay Trail-T or upcoming Cherry Trail chipsets.
Cheap Android tablets are nothing unheard of, but they are still a relatively new arena for Intel, who has spent years trying to transition a greater portion of its business towards the mobile world. The company has been open about its interest in powering inexpensive tablets in the past, but now it appears ready to go all in on the idea.
So far, most of Intel’s tablet penetration has come through Windows 8/8.1 models, for which the company recently launched its Bay Trail-T platform. Although the company appears to be paying more attention to Google’s side of the market, it doesn’t seem likely to forget about Microsoft’s either: the report says that it’s “made reference designs” to new $400, $500, and $600 tiers of Windows 8 slates, with the cheapest fitted with plastic bodies, 1.8GHz processors, 2GB of RAM, and 32GB of storage. Though none of this has been officially confirmed yet, we should hear more details on Intel’s new tablet plans as soon as CES next week.