Still want it?
The Motorola Xoom is a hot little number. Tegra II, a (purported) iPad-equal battery life, a sexy design and...a huge freaking price tag? Most tablet-makers right now are taking the safe route and using Apple's $499 starting iPad pricing as a rough guideline. Anyone who launches a base model that much exceeds the magic number risks locking their tablet in the nebulous "premium" market. Which isn't a great place to be on the tail-end of a deep recession.
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AndroidCentral recently received what appears to be a list of minimum advertised prices for a variety of Android devices on Verizon's network. The Xoom's price (presumably unsubsidized) is heart-wrenching $799. The HTC Thunderbolt is set at $249.99 (subsidized) which should give you an idea of the sort of price premium we should expect for LTE.
So, can a $799 Xoom compete? Not on its own. There HAS to be a subsidized version, available for $300-$400, coming. That would still leave the Xoom well ahead of the iPad in overall cost, but at least it would look more competitive than that big honking number.
And there's more bad news: it looks like the Xoom may end up with MotoBlur. This rumor came straight from the mouth of a European Motorola rep...and was immediately shot down by another rep in a statement to Phandroid.
But the MotoBlur-rumoring rep was Jonathan Nattrass, director of Android product management for Motorola. AKA, someone in the position to know what the hell Motorola has planned. So, clearly, we can't dismiss any of this yet.
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Eventually Motorola will come out with a clear statement. Until then, we're left with a number of questions. If the tablet won't launch with MotoBlur, is refusing the update going to be an option? Will it screw up your ability to grab future OS updates? Why in the hell is Motorola waiting until after launch?