Next Microsoft Update Could Lead to Very Inexpensive Windows Tablets

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Recent months have seen a slew of Windows tablets that sell for about $300. A new version of Microsoft‘s operating system expected next month might lead to an array of even more affordable models.

An unconfirmed report from The Verge indicates that Windows 8.1 Update 1 (which may be called Windows 8.1.1 or Windows 8.2) will be able to run on a device with just 1GB of RAM and 16GB of internal storage. This would allow computer makers to produce tablets that are less expensive than even the mid-range ones that are available now that include 2GB of RAM and 32GB of storage.

Entry-Level Windows Tablets Could Be a Game Changer

Devices like the Dell Venue 8 Pro and Asus VivoTab Note 8 typically sell for between $220 and $300, which puts them in the mid-range of tablet prices. No Windows model has been able to break into the entry-level market, which accounts for a sizable percentage of sales.

However, a 1GB/16GB Windows tablet could sell for $200 or less, especially as Intel has significantly cut prices on its chips, and Microsoft has reportedly lowered what it charges device makers for its operating system. This would allow Windows models to compete with on price with low-cost Android tablets, and actually be less expensive than many similarly-specced devices running Google’s operating system.

Low-end Window tablets would likely appeal only to those looking for a light-duty computer for web surfing, email, and casual games, but these are the tasks people generally buy inexpensive tablets to do.

The update to Windows 8.1 is expected to debut next month. If it really will enable entry-level Windows tablets, these could start appearing this spring.

Source: The Verge



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