Bloomberg reports that Microsoft is cutting the price of Windows 8.1 by 70 percent for makers of low-cost computers and tablets. Obviously this is to be able to compete with Google's Chromebooks etc. The price reduction will be in effect for OEMs only. Manufacturers will be charged $15 to license Windows 8.1 and preinstall it on devices that retail for less than $250, instead of the usual fee of $50, said the people, who asked not to be named because the details aren’t public.
The discount will apply to any products that meet the price limit, with no restrictions on the size or type of device, the people said. By offering incentives for PC makers to sell cheaper models, Microsoft may be able to increase its share of the growing $80 billion tablet market and stave off Chromebooks, notebooks that run Google’s operating system.
Microsoft, which named Satya Nadella as chief executive officer earlier this month, is seeking to speed up development and introduction of new devices. It won’t require products that use the cheaper licensing to complete logo certification, a process that verifies hardware compatibility, one of the people said. Devices aren’t required to be touch-screen compatible, they said.
Julia Kelly-Echeverio, a spokeswoman for Microsoft, declined to comment yesterday.
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