Verizon appears to have only just added Minimum Advertised Pricing for the Motorola Xoom to its internal systems, but already it's been leaked out by more than one source. Android Central has the damning evidence, which lists an $800 levy for any prospective owners of the flagship Android Honeycomb device.
Recent reports are surfacing from Verizon itself that the Motorola Xoom, which will run Honeycomb, will be priced in the $800 range. Most Apple Fanboys, unlike myself, are making snarky remarks - chuckling the night away. Not me, friends. Not this time. You see, I look out for the enterprise user. That's my main goal in life; to make your life easier.
These pricing rumors come from an internal Verizon report. At launch, the Xoom will run 3G and will also be upgradeable to 4G via software update. This we know from official press releases. Are you telling me Verizon won’t subsidize this tablet?
An unsubsidized 32GB iPhone 4 would run $749 off contract. If I were a betting man, the unsubsidized 32GB 3G/4G Xoom would run $800 off contract, and would most likely be around $299-$399-ish with a contract. There’s no way Verizon would sell a 3G/4G tablet in their stores without an option to lock into a contract.
Unfortunately, I think one of the strongest selling points of an off-contract Xoom would be just that - a tablet you can just walk in and buy, nothing to sign. If you look at iPad sales, the vast majority are not buying the carrier capable version. Sure, it's nice to have, but most people just want to go in, throw some money down, and leave with contract-free device. It seems like if that happens with the Xoom, it's going to cost an arm and leg.
Where does this leave enterprise users? Let's just hope your company loves you and will cover the networking contracts that come along with the purchase. Honeycomb looks like the best tablet OS if you're looking for a near-desktop experience. Now if only Microsoft would start making some native apps for tablet OS's that people actually use.