How much will the Apple Tablet cost?

January 8, 2010

How much will the Apple Tablet cost?The consecrated Apple tablet announcement date of Jan. 27 is approaching fast and it can be expected that rumors will be flying just as quickly. Here are some new rumors about tablet cost and pricing.

Noted Apple analyst Ashok Kumar of Northeast Securities has some new information about the components that make up the new Apple tablet computer, and some ideas about how that may translate into pricing. Kumar is saying that the tablet processor will, somewhat surprisingly, be manufactured by Samsung according to an AppleInsider article. He also says that it will be based on the Cortex-A8 ARM architecture. He believes it will have a speed of about 1GHz.

For most of last year, rumors circulated that the new tablet would be based on a proprietary Apple chip, especially after they purchased chip designer P.A. Semi. It has been thought by some that it was the design process of the Apple ARM chip that was taking all the time to release from the beginning of the tablet rumors, especially as time began to stretch out with no word from Apple. If Kumar is right, Apple will apparently not even be using the latest Cortex ARM chip, which would be the A9. The device cost is estimated  to be about $340, though that looks low because it includes a hard disk drive and not the solid state drives that Apple prefers.

Supporting rumors over the last several days about the tablet using 3G wireless technology for connection to the internet, Kumar says that it will be possible to buy the tablet two ways: one model with a lower price, subsidized by a wireless carrier via a service contract and one more expensive model which is not tied to a carrier. It also occurs to us that all that would be needed to make telephone calls from such a 3G tablet would be a Bluetooth or corded headset and a Skype (or similar) account, regardless of its other telephony features.

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