The Race to the Bottom begins on Windows 8 tablets, and this is great for consumers.
I have mentioned several times that anyone who is choosing to be an early adopter on Windows RT will be running the risk of being burned when Windows 8 Atom tablets arrive and competition will start to get fierce. It appears that Dell has taken the first shot against other OEMs with a sub $500 Windows 8 Atom tablet. This is going to force every other OEMs' hands on Atom tablet pricing in order to compete.
Dell is cutting the cost of the Windows 8 slates by changing two major aspects from the standard Latitude 10. Gone is the active digitizer that supports digital inking. And the 2-cell, 30 hr battery — standard for the Latitude — is non-removable, so you won’t be able to swap in a new battery. Businesses likely can’t live with those missing features, but some consumers, educators and students ought to find the compromise acceptable at this price.
At $499, it’s not a bad deal, considering all other specifications are the same as the higher priced model: Intel Atom Z2760 1.8 GHz processor, 2 GB of memory, 10.1-inch IPS screen with 1366 x 768 resolution, 10-finger multitouch and Corning’s Gorilla Glass all with Windows 8 Pro.