Will a large price tag hurt sales for the Motorola XOOM?

Taylor Martin
 from  Concord, NC
| February 7, 2011

For some time now, the most talked about tablet has been the Motorola XOOM. Sporting a dual-core processor, a 10.1-inch display, and Google's latest Android version, the tablet has settled into the daily headlines for months now. Until recently, it has remained a mystery as to how much the device would actually cost. Comparing it to some other tablets, namely the Galaxy Tab and iPad, we expected it to remain in the middle ($600-$700) part of the spectrum. However, Motorola saw it fit to price their first Android tablet at a mighty $800. The rumor from a few weeks ago caused quite an uproar. This confirmation has had a similar affect on people.

To add the icing to the cake, you not only have to shell out $800, you have to activate it on Verizon's network before leaving your local Best Buy with XOOM in tow. So for those that were planning on purchasing a XOOM and using it with Wi-Fi connectivity alone, you will have to suck up at least one month's worth of Verizon data, adding a minimum of $20 to the bill. Then again, you could wait for the Wi-Fi only version.

To be honest, it shouldn't come as a surprise to anyone. It was only a few days ago that Motorola revealed the price of their Laptop Dock for the Atrix 4G. A simple terminal that consists of a battery, an 11.6-inch display, a keyboard, and a touchpad will set customers back a whopping $500. Apparently, Motorola either doesn't believe in competitive pricing or they believe their products are worth about $300 more than comparable tech from other manufacturers. Considering its drool-inducing specifications, I can understand Motorola wanting to charge a little extra for this tablet. But $800 just doesn't seem to fit the bill.

I still have faith that the XOOM will still receive decent sales, but I have no doubt that it will be facing a lot more hesitation from customers that were already on the fence. Even though it is powerful and sports the most desktop-esque experience on a modern tablet, buyers can get a lot more computing power out of a full-fledged laptop for the same price. Not to mention, there are several other tablets on the horizon that may prove to be more affordable.

Despite the fact that tablets have key benefits and offer a pleasurable way to indulge yourself in mass media while on the go, some buyers have remained skeptical. To help sway those unsure buyers, tablets have remained fairly affordable or offered some sort of choice. The iPad ranges from $499 to $829; this range offers several different configurations that help meet the needs and budget of customers. The Galaxy Tab came to market at $600. That isn't exactly cheap, but you could also purchase it on contract for more budget-friendly prices. To begin with, the Motorola XOOM will launch in one flavor at one price point. This doesn't cater to different types of users, which could definitely end up dampening the sales of the highly anticipated tablet.

I tried to wait for an official price before I decided whether I wanted to buy one for myself. Unfortunately, the relentless teasers have wore my patience thin. Expecting it to be appropriately priced, I hyped the XOOM in my own mind before the price was official. Now I'm stuck craving a device that I'm not sure I can justify buying, not for that price at least. Who else out there desperately wants a XOOM tablet but can't justify $800?