After launching its own Tablet and hearing complains from its partners that they are unable to compete against the iPAD and Android Tablets with its original $85 Windows RT pricing, Microsoft showed a move to the right direction and reduce the Windows RT OEM price to $50-65.
According to DigiTimes, Microsoft has updated its licensing rates for OEM Windows 8, including US$60-80 for Windows 8, US$80-100 for Windows 8 Pro (with Office) and US$50-65 for Windows RT (with Office), according to Taiwan-based notebook supply chain makers.
Microsoft also confirmed the launch schedule of Windows 8 at the end of October with the RTM version of Windows 8 to be released in the first week of August for testing.
Sources from notebook players pointed out that the supply chain is placing high hopes on Windows 8 and expect the operating system to help resurrect consumer demand for traditional notebooks; however, due to remaining uncertainties, most players are still taking a conservative attitude about the launch.
Sources also noted that Windows 8 is unlikely to help significantly boost PC demand before 2013 since the new operating system will increase hardware costs due to some components needing to feature additional functions such as touchscreens to allow the operating system to perform fully, while the addition of the operating system’s licensing costs, the increasing expenses are expected to boost Windows 8-based products’ end prices to a rather unfriendly level.
However, as the notebook supply chain will gradually shift their production to touchscreen models with costs to start to see drops, the sources expect demand for Windows 8-based products will see an obvious increase starting mid-second quarter 2013.