Tablets keep getting cheaper and cheaper, and it seems that the trend won’t stop during the holiday season. Intel CEO Brian Krzanich says that we should expect $99 tablets during the holiday shopping season, as well as $299 Haswell-equipped laptops and $349 hybrid machines.
Krzanich said during a conference call today with analysts that touchscreen-based laptops running on Intel’s Haswell processors are expected to be the headliner during the shopping season as far as PC offerings are concerned. Haswell chips offer twice the graphics capability and 50% better battery life than previous CPUs. Krzanich also detailed that its Atom Bay Trail-equipped laptops will start at around $299, with at least 10 different models to choose from.
Krzanich didn’t detail a whole lot on what we should expect as far as the $99 tablets, but they’ll most likely run Intel processors and be made by a variety of third-party manufacturers. It’ll mostly come down to what companies are willing to sell their tablets at an extremely low cost, though. However, $99 tablets don’t seem far-fetched, as Amazon’s Kindle Fire tablet series, for example, starts at just $139.
Of course, companies that do sell $99 tablets probably won’t just call it a day there. Like Amazon, many companies will most likely rely on digital content sales to make up for the loss of underselling these $99 tablets, but seeing as how a lot of tablet makers don’t have a large digital ecosystem, it’s hard to say which companies will offer super-cheap tablets. Google and Amazon seem like the only viable candidates for something like that, and both companies recently just did their yearly tablet refresh.
However, it appears as though Krzanich is confident that sub-$100 tablets will hit the market later this year, and it’s possible that Intel already has something in the pipeline. Either way, it’ll be interesting to see how we’ll get $99 tablets on the market. Currently, you can get small tablets at these prices, but they’re usually made by cheap Chinese manufacturers and the hardware and software is pretty bad for the most part.
Intel reported that its overall revenues grew 5% in the third quarter, thanks to the launch of Haswell-based machines. The company said that revenue hit $13.48 billion , and net income was up 49% from the previous quarter.