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Microsoft: $99 Windows tablets and $199 notebooks coming this fall

dell venue pro

Microsoft expects that consumers could see a seven inch tablet running on Windows 8.1 in stores priced as low as $99 this fall, along with notebooks as cheap as $199.

The company's chief operating officer Kevin Turner made those claims today as part of his section of Microsoft's 2014 Worldwide Partner Conference keynote address. His statement would seem to confirm a report back in June, when a Chinese OEM claimed that it would release an eight-inch Windows 8.1 tablet later this year that would cost $100. Microsoft announced during BUILD that it would ditch its manufacturer royalty fee to OEMs for devices smaller than nine inches.

Turner said that there are Windows 8.1 notebooks priced as low as $249 that compete with the budget priced Chromebooks from Google. They include the Acer Aspire ES1, which is already out, and an 11.6-inch Toshiba notebook that will be released in time for the holiday shopping season. Turner also showed off an upcoming $199 Windows 8.1 notebook from HP, the Stream, during the keynote address.

What do you think about these cheap Windows 8.1 devices that are due out later this year?

Source: Microsoft

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Reader comments

Microsoft: $99 Windows tablets and $199 notebooks coming this fall

128 Comments

I am glad they are bringing some affordable products out. While I am surface all the way I am glad to see some potential things to battle against google crap and their chromebook.

I pre-ordered my venue 8 pro too, but that connector has given me lots of problems. Very few 2 amp tablet chargers work with it, and it has somehow made 4 cables unusable.  Unfortunetly the problems aren't enough to return it.

 

In my opinion, the 8 is too small for the current Win 8.1.  I also have the venue 11 pro, and that size works much better for that OS.

Every 2 amp charger I've used works fine. No, you can't use the thin crap USB cables you get with most chargers because they weren't made to be used with anything over 1 amp, they will burn out. The rocketfish cables from Bestbuy will handle your 2 amp charger just fine.

I have used my surface pro power connector since I got it and its been working fine. I got it back in December when Microsoft had it on sale for $99

Venue 8 and Venue Pro 8 are two different products. Do you know what you are talking about? I know that any circuitry can fail at some point in the future. The question is when. Besides, I can say the same thing about Nexus 7. Power connector and the Qi charging will fail, just don't know when.

It is not an absolute. The USB OTG spec allowed Dell to make an unfortunate choice for the micro USB connector. My first one had an issue and it was due to the fact that I kept trying to plug it in the worng way which resulted in bent pins. MS replaced it for me and I have paid attention to the way I insert the cable and it has all been fine.

Lenovo Thinkpad 8 is affordable with great HD display and with micro HDMI port that is not available in Dell Venue 8 Pro.

Have you been following Chrome OS development before talking crap? They've actually been making some serious strides, like Google Docs now being able to open Office documents directly without conversion. That's huge. Mock it all you want but it could shape up to be a very viable competitor to Windows in a relatively short space of time. Just look at the pace of Android development. There are now as many Android users as their are Windows users. I wouldn't underestimate them by any means.

At Google I/O, they said that only a billion people use Android. Have an extra 500 million people got Androids since then? I mean, if you had said that, then you would be right in that both would have 1.5 billion users. If you didn't mean that, then you're lying. Android is still only 2/3 as big as Windows.

In fact I did mean to say that by this time next year they will have as many users as Windows of the adoption pace maintains its current rate. But if you look at the latest stats of devices with Windows installed vs Android (in fact an article just posted on this site to that effect) it appears that Google may have already eaten Microsofts' lunch. So no, I'm not lying.

I can't take seriously anyone who uses the phrase "serious strides" with Google Docs. Google Docs is awful. People only use it because Google integrated it into the spyware known as Gmail (also awful).

Oh really? Can you name another office suite that capable of doing that? And Chrome OS is a rolling release, receiving upgrades on a basis of weeks not months. The pace of development is pretty swift. The same can't be said of Windows. BTW, I own both devices, do you? If not you only think you know what's going on, because I'm watching this thing get better all the time. You can stick your head in the sand and live in fantasy land until it bites you in the ass if you want, though. Doesn't alter reality. Remember when Ballmer dismissed iPhone? Yeah, so does he.

No disrespect, but if you're so invested in Chrome OS, why are you on a windows phone/windows site? When I want to support apple or android, I have account on each ones forums and make my comment there. When I want to comment about windows phone/windows needed improvement, complaints, etc, I don't it here an purely about windows and what the need to do not a comparison because if you're not happy using windows phone/windows, then you should move on.

Dude, I'm just pointing out that they shouldn't dismiss Google that easily. I have my hand in Windows , Mac and Chrome OS as well as Windows Phone and Android (iOS not so much). I'm just a realist and a fan of technology in general who happens to prefer Microsoft technologies. I love Windows and WP but at the same time I'm not blind.

I call an OS that needs a weekly "upgrade" a beta. A beta tester who thinks that his beta OS is better than a released OS without "weekly upgrades" and "rolling releases" has drank too much coolaid.

It's called a rolling release model. Look it up. So does the fact that Windows gets patches and bug fixes every first Tuesday mean it's a beta as well? Just means the development cycle is moving faster. And the people on WP Central are the last people who should calling others Kool aid drinkers. I'm a fan and user of WP, but I also don't kid my self when it comes to other platforms ability to challenge mine.

Are you saying Microsoft OS's also get regular updates as well? Make up your mind. Different people have different take on OS update release models. I want a stable working OS, not something that get new stuffs and bug fixes every week. I don't call it a feature, I call it a nuisance. Just because you get updates every week does not mean the development is faster. It is an illusion. Most consumers don't really care about it unless these updates are essential for the OS to work. In this case, the OS is a beta. I use the OS for work, not to discover new features every week. Only junkies need new features every week. Do you feel that the Chrome OS is deficient in some way? I don't go into a Google forum to proclaim the superiority of the Windows OS because I am confident of my choice. Only Koolaid drinkers feel the need to go into other OS forum to proclaim their superiority because they are insecure about their choice.

Chrome OS overall is a giant joke.

It might have more marketshare than Windows RT, but that's not saying a lot. Windows RT kind of bellyflopped. 

If a consumer is given a choice of a (limited) Chromebook and a Windows 8.1 laptop and both are $199, they will typically choose the more familiar, the more capable device. Cheaper Windows computers and tablets are the death knell of Chromebooks, no matter how capable their strides.

75% of Android users are those who bought cheap Chinese smartphones that flooded the market. You didn't count them, did you?

 

It sounds like the new generation of the intel is on its way out then. in UK, John Lewis- a big retailer, has reduced the price of an 8 inch Lenovo tablet to £199 with £50 cash back on top, so for £150 you get a very thin full windows 8.1 which works great. I think if the price comes down, most people would buy what they are familiar with, i.e. full windows than an Android.

They want to cover all types of users..And if they like the services/products they upgrade!! Just like Nokia 'X' Series!!

Think he's referring to the horribly annoying "multi-hit" problem that many have experienced (inc. me)when typing/swiping. If you read the Dell support forum there are hundreds of replies to the various threads that are there.

I just want some app parity. I don't need more apps, I just want my apps to function as fluidly as they do on the LG G2. Ebay, LinkedIn, Groupme, DI Radio, for example. Atrocious. I am holding my breath in hopes that Cyan/8.1 gets the traction we need to get those apps working sweetly.

I just can't put down my 1520, it's too fantastic, first party apps aside. (Seriously business owners, when third party developer apps run circles around yours, you hired the wrong guys.)

it's WPCentral, when you find alot of complainers... even if the article is about something totally different subject ;)

Great. Microsoft should let its own products be "premium" devices and allow their OEM partners fill the void on the bottom. Great news.

Excitedly waiting for a $99 Windows tablet. I guess it'll depend on what it can do, but if it can replace my Samsung galaxy tab then I'm sold.

A decent screen is possible. I bought an hp 11 and the display is better than most actual laptops that are around $500.

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Yeah, but just because there are $99 tablets doesn't mean you have to get that specific cheap tablet, it just means they will go down in price overall.

Most of the time you can find a Dell Venue 8 Pro in Amazon for $200, and that has a $50 license fee backed in.  Now imagine that same tablet (not the best, but not a piece of crap either) $50 cheaper...

I'll say $150 is pretty cheap for a X86 tablet with full windows and office

I gave 218 after tax for my Dell Venue 8 Pro. It replaced my 2012 Nexus 7, the only thing I miss is a real Google Hangouts app and Shadowgun...

Outstanding, now if they can only reduce their surface and Lumia lines by 200-300 they may have a strong market foothold after all.

I just hope they don't suck due to being slow and underpowered, making people frustrated and turning to other platforms instead...

We're a minority, most consumers on care about price and don't have the slightest idea what processor is in any tablet or phone be it an ipad, iphone, etc.

Cheap being the operative word, I doubt we should expect any decent specs from these even though the stream does look fetching =[

When to India. If this came here in $99 price tag, I feel there will be scarcity later on to meet the demand of the people, for the people, and by the people!

MS isn't making these devices. The operating system is finished, so it's up to the manufacturers to push them out. I suspect that they will wait until fall to launch for "back to school" and then be firmly in place for the holiday shopping season.

"Back to school" has already started in my part of the country. Waiting until August 1 is too late, when some districts start on the 18th. (School admins openly said to give more to teach before the standardized tests start, even though every teacher claims they don't teach to the tests.)

Too late for you, maybe. It will be too late for some and OK timing for others.  The shelving commitments for "back to school" might even already be alotted.  There is so much more that goes into thing than people say "speed up MS".  Like I said, that OS is finished and now it's the OEMs that need to do it and if they miss this cycle of "back to school" then they can get ready for the holiday season. 

If someone must have it now, there are already sub $200 tablets from Lenovo, Dell and Toshiba. 

Lets see what you get my nexus 7 has 1080p nfc, wireless charging among other things. Also my network cant tell im teathering it so can use it with my uncapped data allowance. My surface is picked up as a latop and is blocked. Still like to see what's offered up.

Your Nexus 7 with that 1080P and NFC is also selling for over 270+ at Amazon. Are you comparing it with a $99 tablet?

I am curious how they managed to hack Windows Mobile 5.0 onto a nexus 7... Maybe I need to check out XDA more often...

I assume this is to combat Android and Chrome OS. Google needs to stop inflating the OS market with shitty OS'. Android is fine on phones but tablets and laptops should have a REAL os.

That's not the case anymore.... Not that I actually ever use a laptop offline anymore, but they do work without a connection now.

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The first one that catches my eye I'm jumping on it. I wouldn't care if it was just rt its just for my tablet anyways

They need to break those price brackets, as we need these tablets to compete with the cheap android tablets that are floating around sub 100.

Also does anyone have a link for the wpc vision keynote? I was watching it and the stream switched mid stream to another wpc broadcast after it got stuck buffering. Bloody BT haven't activated fibre in my cabinet yet...

As long as the smaller tablets plays nice with OneNote and include a stylus I would be interested in them. I have been looking for a smaller tablet to use as a notepad/car playlist since the death of my Nexus 7.

Didn't we hear the same thing from MS last year? I suggested to some friends that they hold off until the holiday season last year because there were supposed to be some great $200 PCs on the way.

It'll be nice if they pull it off this year, but, until there's something one the market I'm not putting any stock in this one.

There was\is, it's called the Dell Venue Pro 8 and if you look around you can actually find some entry laptops for around 200.00. There are actually a decent selection of 350.00 under devices.

Good to see these lower prices. Without more info on specifications for these lower priced devices, it's hard to say much more.

except, we can assume that come the Fall, we should also see lower priced and more powerful android and iOS based devices.

I am waiting for a high end small form windows tablet.  Ultra HD screen and high end processor.  Something that can at least match the latest samsung android models. 

That’s great. But I think they should speed up the development of Cortana and send her to plain Windows too.
Also Cortana is yet to impress me. Here is something random I wish Cortana could do on Windows and Windows Phone:
1. Cortana, could you dim the light for me?
2. Cortana, you know it’s hot today, why haven’t you lowered the room temperature?
3. Cortana, more tea please.
4. Cortana, how do you grade my singing?
5. Cortana, which one of those jeans fits me better?
6. Cortana, I am going to take a nap, wake me up if someone approaches.
7. Cortana, take pictures of strangers and alert me.
8. Cortana, I don’t want to talk to Joe, you can just give him busy tone every time.

hopefully these tablet devices will run RT a full version of 8.1 will NOT make any sense on small screen tablet like 7inch

Having lived with the Surface RT for a while now, it's ok, but I still miss some desktop apps (mainly the selection of quality media players). RT is likely dead, or at least hibernating for a couple of years.

As a highschool student looking for a cheap computer, these don't look very appealing. I wonder how well windows would run. 

A $99 Windows tablet honestly sounds more appealing than a $99 Android tablet. Considering $99 would get you a barely-working Walmart thing that can't access the Play Store and would be about as quick as ENIAC, at least a Windows tablet would have a certain minimum standard of performance.

It can also probably run what I want out of a tablet, like web browsers, reading and maybe a few emulators. Games might be a bit of a joke on a $99 Windows tablet, but they'd probably not be much better on similar-priced Android hardware, either.

Exactly. I bought a $99.00 Tabeo E2 Android tablet from Toys R Us for my 4yr old for Xmas and if I could have found a 8inch W8 tablet for same price (including case,screen protector...), though we did get a decent discount, we would have definitely grabbed one.

Had to root it to actually get apps for my daughter from the Play Store that would be useable for her.

I don't care how (cheap) made it is, for 99.00 any tablet would be better running Windows than Android. After buying an Android tablet and dealing with the junk crap that the Play Store is infested with ( you can say what you want but I deal with bs from The Play Store daily that's supposed to be Child Friendly ) Android is a piece of sh/t OS riddled with piece of sh/t app selections and even cheaper piece of sh/t tablets and phones. Sure there are some awesome apps but the bad outways the good 4 to 1.

Can't wait for a cheap 99.00 tablet to switch my daughter to so I can beat this Android junk with a mallet.

I wonder if these will be windows 9 compatible. $99 tablet no big deal, but anything more than that I'd expect it to be upgradeable.

I can't imagine what will be missing in a 99 dollar Windows tablet.  Its tough enough with these Dell Venue 8 Pro tablets.

A $99 7-inch WINDOWS tablet?! WOW! Well, it looks like THIS could be the BEGINNING OF THE END for both Google's ChromeOS AND Android, right? We'll soon see about that..."Que Serra, Serra" (Whatever will be, will be)!