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Low-cost tablets to give Apple a challenge

2013-03-12 10:33 Shanghai Daily     Web Editor: qindexing comment

Low-cost tablet computers costing under US$200 each will debut in the domestic market in coming months to challenge the dominance of Apple's iPad and iPad Mini, Shanghai Daily learned yesterday.

Most of the new 7-inch tablet devices will be priced between US$150 and US$200 each, only half of the cheapest iPad Mini which costs 2,498 yuan (US$396) on the Chinese mainland, according to firms including Hewlett-Packard, Acer and ASUS.

HP, the world's No. 1 personal computer maker, will introduce its latest 7-inch Android model Slate 7 in April. Acer, which launched its Iconia B1tablet costing US$149 in the domestic market, expects sales of 1 million globally in the current quarter.

The second generation Nexus 7, developed by Google and ASUS, may be unveiled in the second quarter and expected to cost US$199, a price similar to the first-generation Nexus 7.

Lenovo Group Ltd, China's biggest PC maker, said it may launch a new 7-inch tablet computer at a "competitive" price but it did not specify when.

By the end of the third quarter last year, tablet sales in the domestic market totaled 2.6 million units. Apple had 71 percent market share, according to Analysys International, a Beijing-based research firm.

In the Chinese smartphone market, Samsung ranked No. 1 last year with 17.7 percent share, US-based researcher Strategy Analytics said.

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