If it's really priced at $800, Motorola's Xoom won't stand a chance against iPad

If it's really priced at $800, Motorola's Xoom won't stand a chance against iPad

Summary: Word is that the Motorola Xoom tablet, running Google Android Honeycomb, will become available on Feb. 24. But with an $800 price tag, will anyone choose it over the iPad?

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Just for the record: an $800 price tag on the Motorola Xoom - the first tablet PC running Android 3 (aka Honeycomb) - is way too high.

Details are leaking out today, via a post on Engadget, that Best Buy will start selling the Xoom on Feb. 24 for $799.99. And it appears that there will be some tiered pricing on Verizon's 3G data plans for the device, ranging from $20 per month for up to 1 GB of data to $80 per month for up to 100 gigs. Mind you, there's no mention of the pricing for the 4G data usage on this device, which will be 4G upgradeable.

Image Credit: Engadget

In a post after Google's Honeycomb preview event last week, I noted that the Xoom - or any Honeycomb-powered tablet, for that matter - could be a serious contender to Apple's iPad if the experience is just as good as the iPad's. But I also noted that pricing would be key. If it can beat the iPad on price, consumers who like what they see in Android may be compelled to choose Honeycomb over iPad. If the price comes in too high, consumers might not be willing to buy into the hype, choosing instead to go with an established winner - the iPad.

The $800 price tag on the Best Buy ad is $300 more than Apple's $500 WiFi -only low-end iPad. Make it a 3G-powered iPad and you're looking at $629 - still a $170 cheaper than the Xoom.

Can you say D.O.A?

That's what the Xoom will be - Dead On Arrival - if it's really priced that high. Granted, we don't know that to be true. There doesn't seem to be any confirmation yet from Motorola, Google or Verizon - the big names that all appeared on the Xoom's debut ad during the Super Bowl. (By the way, the commercial, which I've embedded below, left everyone at my Super Bowl party with a head-scratching "huh?" as we watched. Kind of a deep message for a Super Bowl ad, if you ask me.)

For the record, I like what the Xoom brings to the table. It appears - just from what I know - to be a top-notch product with a lot of potential. Add to it the 4G capabilities, the expandable storage and, yeah, even Flash, and you've got a product that can really make potential iPad buyers stop and pause.

But none of that will matter when all is said and done because that price tag will likely send some consumers - myself included - straight for the Apple store before anyone can even say "microSD card."

As soon as we get official word on pricing and availability, we'll be sharing the details with you.

Topics: Mobility, Hardware, iPad, Laptops, Tablets, Wi-Fi

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84 comments
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  • Yes, and Wi-Fi is blocked for a month unless you pay for cellular data plan

    -- if you are going to buy subsidized "cheaper" version through Verizon. So much for iPad-killing "liberator".<br><br>Sam writes: "<i><quote>In a post after Googles Honeycomb preview event last week, I noted that the Xoom - or any Honeycomb-powered tablet, for that matter - could be a serious contender to Apples iPad if the experience is just as good as the iPads.</quote></i>"<br><br>There is no way the experience can be as good as iPad's -- simply because there are near to 0 (null, nill) applications created for this device. It will take like half year before developers will bring at least barely enough quantity of applications for Android 3.0 (id est truly tablet-size-fitting).<br><br>iPad has over 60 000 applications already now. <b>Any sane user would choose iPad for that reason alone</b> unless he/she can not wait another month for iPad 2 to have videocamera or bloody needs more physical ports.
    DDERSSS
    • RE: If it's really priced at $800, Motorola's Xoom won't stand a chance against iPad

      @denisrs

      Applications - Quantity does not equal Quality.

      If the OS has the Applications you need to work then that is all that matters. After all Apple fanboys have been making the same claim to defend MacOS which has considerably less applications when compared to Windows right? Don't get me wrong, I agree with that statement. As long as the device does what the purchaser wants it to do then there is no problem.

      I myself have an Archos101 tablet and it runs Android and it has the applications I use for work and for personal. Does it have 45 different fart machine apps? No, but I don't need that.

      Also the Author does not do a fair comparison with the pricing. The Xoom seems to be on par (if not better) in the area of processing and it has 1GB ram compared to the iPad 1 256MB and the iPad 2 512MB?? and has 32GB of built in storage with the option to expand via a SD Card slot. The iPad comparable to this currently is $729.

      Maybe the Author needs to do a fair comparison instead of a skewed one that appears to be based on personal bias.
      bobiroc
      • when the quality is zero.. you cannot have quality either.. LMAO..

        @bobiroc
        doctorSpoc
      • and Moto is simply not selling the version that people want..

        @bobiroc <5% buy the synonymous 32GB/3G+WiFi iPad.. people buy the WiFi only versions of iPad to 3G ones 3 to 1.. people don't want another contract.. if they need info on the go they have a phone for that that is much better suited for whipping out at an instant and that sort of thing.. and as well they can tether if they want as well.. 3G tablets are dumb.. and everyone knows it.. Moto is dumb for building a product that very few want to buy.. if they built the Wifi only one they had a chance.. the simply built the wrong device for the market.. it's also a $200 premium over the Wifi only ones.. $300 if you count that one month of service and connection etc.. who's going to pay an extra $300 for a feature they didn't want in the 1st place?? you'd have to be a complete fool..

        so sure you can compare it to the 32GB/3G+WiFi iPad... but that one sells poorly as well.. what the hell are these guys thinking??
        doctorSpoc
      • RE: If it's really priced at $800, Motorola's Xoom won't stand a chance against iPad

        @bobiroc
        "Maybe the Author needs to do a fair comparison instead of a skewed one that appears to be based on personal bias."

        Thank you... I hope he read that.
        keith5885
      • RE: If it's really priced at $800, Motorola's Xoom won't stand a chance against iPad

        @bobiroc

        Hmmmm ok so they have 45 different fart machine apps... (no they really don't, but I'll act as blind as you for this post)

        That leaves 59,955 apps left to have you try to talk trash about.
        Geuseppi
      • RE: If it's really priced at $800, Motorola's Xoom won't stand a chance against iPad

        @doctorSpoc

        [i]"so sure you can compare it to the 32GB/3G+WiFi iPad... but that one sells poorly as well.. what the hell are these guys thinking??"[/i]

        Oh I totally agree on that one as they should offer a WiFi only one and sell it at a price comparable to the WiFi iPad. I just wanted it to be as fair of a comparison as possible because his little blog implied that the iPad for hundreds cheaper was on the same playing field which it is not. Have to compare Apples to Apples so to speak (no pun intended). I mean you cannot compare a $20,000 Chevrolet to a $40,000 Lexus on the basis that it has 4 doors and tires without digging into the extra features on why the Lexus costs so much more and point out that Cadillac has a car compared to the Lexus in the same price point right?

        As far as quality goes there are many apps that cross platform from iOS to Android and function very much the same. I have an iPhone 4 as well and find that at least 70% of those iOS applications are of ZERO quality too.
        bobiroc
      • RE: If it's really priced at $800, Motorola's Xoom won't stand a chance against iPad

        @Geuseppi

        [i]"Hmmmm ok so they have 45 different fart machine apps... (no they really don't, but I'll act as blind as you for this post)

        That leaves 59,955 apps left to have you try to talk trash about."[/i]

        Actually you are right. Using fart as a keyword in the iOS App store I hit the "Show 25 more" button 4 times and so far there are more than 100 applications that can make fart tones or fart jokes. I would keep going but it would be pointless.

        I just threw a number out randomly because if you use an iOS device you know there are many many applications that claim to do the same thing and most of them are of very poor quality.
        bobiroc
      • RE: If it's really priced at $800, Motorola's Xoom won't stand a chance against iPad

        @bobiroc
        You should go to the Android store if you like lots of fart apps. 235 and counting....
        rfoto
      • RE: If it's really priced at $800, Motorola's Xoom won't stand a chance against iPad

        @rfoto

        [i]"You should go to the Android store if you like lots of fart apps. 235 and counting...."[/i]

        Yep, there are useless applications on many different platforms which brings me back to my original point of if the device and it's OS does what you need it to do then having more Applications than the other guy is irrelevant and should not be used as a basis for claiming superiority.

        If you tear down the core functionality of what people look for in a tablet both iPads and Android based ones will work for most people. One should not be made fun of because they like a feature such as having a SD Card Slot or native USB Slot because somebody else feels it is unneeded and can be done by using a proprietary adapter that costs an extra $30 and that you have to carry around with you. Maybe that should be factored in the cost of the iPad too? So that makes the comparable iPad $759. Hmmm keeps going up now doesn't it.
        bobiroc
      • RE: If it's really priced at $800, Motorola's Xoom won't stand a chance against iPad

        @bobiroc
        While most of us generally buy and use the same types of apps, many of us are also involved in unique fields of work or play and when there are a lot of apps available there is a much better chance of finding rare apps that suit our specific needs.
        rfoto
      • RE: If it's really priced at $800, Motorola's Xoom won't stand a chance against iPad

        @bobiroc <br>"As long as the device does what the purchaser wants it to do then there is no problem."<br>I agree. All that matters is the notion of "fit for purpose". That is the benefit of a variety of devices being available. Different devices, OSes, apps etc will suit different people or different businesses and their needs. The idea that some particular device or OS or whatever is intrinsically better than another is idiotic. What matters is the purpose for which the device, OS, app etc is required and any assessment needs to be against needs or requirements.
        Wakemewhentrollsgone
      • RE: If it's really priced at $800, Motorola's Xoom won't stand a chance against iPad

        @bobiroc Actually the Xoom cost would even higher given that one is locked into a monthly 3G (or 4G when it is available) plan where the iPad is not locked into a monthly plan.
        athynz
      • And do you add the Verizon Activation fee to the Xoom?

        @bobiroc

        Price keeps going up, doesn't it?
        Bruizer
      • RE: And do you add the Verizon Activation fee to the Xoom?

        @Bruizer

        So there is not an activation fee and minimal 3G data plan when you purchase a 3G capable iPad? From what I gather the whole locked WiFi thing has to do with Verizon Hot Spots and not personal WiFi. It sucks but that is Verizon for ya. Actually it is the nature of most cell phone companies these days.

        @athynz

        Re: Monthly Plan

        Like I said above if you have a 3G Capable iPad then you need a cellular plan don't you? Maybe you can buy a 3G capable iPad outright and just not use the 3G part but then what is the point. The whole locked into a plan deal is the fault of the cell phone companies and really separate issue. Maybe there will be a Xoom with WiFi only, maybe not. However, that is not the point I am trying to make. The author blatantly compares a less featured product to the Xoom when there is a more comparable product of the same company that would be more accurate therefore skewing the information to lead people to believe that the iPad is considerably cheaper which is not the case. That is the only point I am trying to make other than the fact that some people feel that iOS is superior to any other mobile OS out there.
        bobiroc
      • RE: If it's really priced at $800, Motorola's Xoom won't stand a chance against iPad

        @bobiroc "So there is not an activation fee and minimal 3G data plan when you purchase a 3G capable iPad?"

        No...there is not. Sure, you CAN get a SIM card from your favorite 3g-compatable carrier and sign up for a data plan (AT&T, for all their uselessness, even offer a no-contract data plan for iPad). But you can walk into an Apple store (at least in Canada), buy a 3G capable iPad, and walk out without a data contract.

        Of course, if you have a 3G iPad, I'm not sure why you wouldn't get a data plan...but you are NOT forced.
        samalie
      • RE: If it's really priced at $800, Motorola's Xoom won't stand a chance against iPad

        @bobiroc For the record I just typed "fart" into openSUSE's package manager, checked the box to search by description as well as title and got "No results". I think this means x86-based tablets are superior to iOS or Android. :-) Or at least, Howard Stern would never want one...

        On a more serious note, you're 100% correct. iPads may be cheaper, but they also possess significantly lower-end specs and features compared to the Xoom. By the author's reasoning, people would never buy an iPhone when they could get my pay-as-you go Nokia flip phone for $40.
        jgm@...
      • RE: If it's really priced at $800, Motorola's Xoom won't stand a chance against iPad

        @bobiroc - 100% agreed! A 16GB iPad with 3GS (with 256MB RAM) for $629 or a Xoom with 32GB storage and 1GB of RAM for $899 -- yeah, real equal specs in order to promote a "fair and balanced" article with.
        HypnoToad72
      • @bobiroc

        No minimal activation fee on 3G iPad. Fully prepaid.
        Bruizer
      • RE: If it's really priced at $800, Motorola's Xoom won't stand a chance against iPad

        @bobiroc But it doesn't have to be $800 "SwayTrain"
        Reynoldrap