Sticker shock is confirmed as Best Buy prices the Motorola Xoom tablet, powered by Google's Android OS, at $799.99.
As the battle for control of the tablet market heats up, Best Buy released
the preorder price for the Motorola Xoom tablet
made its debut at last week's Mobile World Congress
Barcelona, Spain. The tablet, which runs on Google Android's "Honeycomb"
platform, carries a list price of $799.99, significantly higher than that of
rival tablets like the Apple iPad, which starts at $500.
The Xoom offers a 1GHz dual-core processor and 10.1-inch widescreen HD
display with 1,280-by-800 resolution to support HD video. It also boasts HDMI-out;
a 5-megapixel rear-facing camera for 720p video capture and 2-megapixel
front-facing camera for video chats; and a built-in gyroscope, barometer, e-compass,
accelerometer and adaptive lighting. Honeycomb features the latest Google
Mobile platforms such as Google Maps 5.0 with 3D interaction, and the tablet
also supports Adobe Flash player.
Accessories include a standard dock for watching video content or listening
to music through external speakers as the device charges, a speaker HD Dock for
sending HD content directly to a TV or clearly listening to music through two
built-in speakers, and a custom keyboard with Bluetooth wireless technology and
special Android shortcut keys.
Over the course of the MWC conference, major electronics manufacturers showed off tablet computers
including Samsung, Acer LG and HTC. During
the conference, Motorola CEO Sanjay Jha
confirmed the Xoom would cost $799 unsubsidized from Verizon Wireless later
this month, with WiFi-only pricing around $600.
Samsung's device includes an 8-megapixel rear-facing camera with auto-focus
and a 2-megapixel front-facing camera that lets users capture experiences with
full HD record and play. With the Android Honeycomb browser and Flash 10.1
capability, the tablet also offers dual surround-sound speakers. The Tab 10.1,
which boasts a 1GHz Dual Core application processor, low-power DDR2
memory and 6860mAh battery power, offers a large-screen alternative to the
company's 7-inch Galaxy Tab, launched late last year.
The Android platform took center stage at the conference, with Google CEO
Eric Schmidt devoting time in his keynote presentation to demonstrate Android
Honeycomb applications running on a Xoom tablet. During the first half of 2011,
IT research firm Strategy Analytics expects the Android OS to continue
accounting for larger portions of the market. Earlier this year, IDC
forecast 44.6 million tablets to ship in 2011-with U.S. sales accounting for
nearly 40 percent of the total-and grow to 70.8 million units in 2012.
However, the iPad is widely tapped to continue leading the tablet market in
2011, according to a January report
Research. Forrester analyst Sara Rotman Epps said she expects tablet sales to
top 24.1 million, more than double the 10.3 million she estimates were sold
through 2010. She said the lion's share will be iPads in 2011 and even into
2012, citing interest in the upcoming iPad 2, rumored to have front- and