New Tablets From Samsung and Sony

Abdel Ibrahim and Jon Dick, writing for The Tech Block:

When Samsung made its latest Galaxy Tab pitch, for instance, instead of giving consumers reason to overlook the rest of the Tab family’s disappointing performance, the company overshadowed the tablet’s 7.7-inch, LTE credentials with this fuckup: The Galaxy tab 7.7 will set you back a minimum $499, and that’s with a 2-year contract. If you say to hell with carriers, the price of the puny tablet swells to an eye-watering, deal-breaking $699.

And Sony, already bleeding money, is similarly stupid. Its Tablet P, a 5.5-inch tablet with a Nintendo DS-like ability to fold in half, will price itself off the market with a 399-dollar contract tag, and that price skyrockets to $549 without a contract.

Perhaps Sony and Samsung aren’t stupid, though. Perhaps they simply can’t afford to sell these tablets for less. Don’t underestimate Apple’s supply chain and economy-of-scale advantages. (But if that’s the case, one could argue they’re stupid for even trying. If you can’t make something at a competitive price, why make it?)

But these guys are right that these prices seem like non-starters. The iPad is better, bigger, has more apps and better apps, and is cheaper. The fact that these tablets are only price competitive with the iPad when they’re bought with a two-year contract is a killer. People aren’t stupid. People hate contracts.

Thursday, 1 March 2012