Microsoft and Intel are both said to be working closely with PC manufacturers in hopes of shoving Apple’s iPad down to less than 50% of the global market share by 2013.
Original design manufacturers based in Taiwan indicated to DigiTimes that Intel and Microsoft have been working closely with partners to develop new tablets based on the forthcoming Windows 8 operating system, which will launch this fall. The sources indicated that Microsoft will release Windows 8 for traditional PCs to device makers in September, while Windows RT, the newly announced name for the ARM-based version, will be issued some time after.
There are expected to be a total of 32 Windows 8 tablets available by the end of this year. HP, Dell, Lenovo, Acer, Asustek, and Toshiba are expected to launch devices this year.
Pricing of Windows 8 tablets from Lenovo and Acer are expected to be priced as low as $300, in order to take on low-priced Android tablets, while more expensive and powerful models will go up against the iPad. Those devices are expected to fetch as much as $1,000. Apple’s most expensive iPad (64GB, with WiFi and 4G connectivity) is $829.
Intel has been trying to stage a comeback in the mobile space ever since Apple rejected Intel’s Atom processors, saying they weren’t efficient enough to run the iPad. Apple instead developed its own ARM chip. Currently, most mobile devices run on ARM processors instead of Intel’s mobile chips.
Intel is making a stab for success in the mobile market with its new “Medfield” line of processors.
Microsoft is planning to take no chances in the processor wars, as they announced last year the Windows 8 will offer ARM compatibility.