Fusion Garage Drops Price of Grid10 by $200

Well, it appears that someone in the tablet industry watched what happened last month with the HP TouchPad and may have taken notes. Engadget is reporting, and Fusion Garage has confirmed, that the Grid10’s previously announced prices of $499 for their 16-gigabyte WiFi model, and $599 for the 16-gigabyte 3G/WiFi models were reduced to $299 and $399 respectively. Reportedly, pre-orders placed before the price decrease have been adjusted accordingly. On the bad news side the shipping date was pushed back to October 1 from September 15.

Some of you will remember the unique ad campaign that Fusion Garage ran prior to their product announcement on August 16.

I’m hoping this is a sign that some of these tablet manufacturers are beginning to understand the current tablet marketplace. Apple has the brand, marketing and reputations for quality to allow it to charge top-tier pricing for devices like its iPad. Newcomers to the market need to either launch with a product that is demonstratively superior to the iPad or at a significant discount. I believe the TouchPad would have sold considerably better if HP had priced it at $299 and would be on its way to building a user base and developer interest in webOS.

All that being said, a spokesperson for Fusion Garage told Engadget that they had intended to launch at the reduced price all along and had announced the higher pricing because of business negotiations. Let’s hope they’re better at building a tablet than they are at spinning a news story.

Posted in: News, Tablets, Ultra Portables

{ 10 comments… add one }

  • E September 12, 2011, 5:58 pm

    See to believe?

  • Ken Schoenberg September 12, 2011, 6:36 pm

    @E if you’re talking about the device…well, it should be soon enough. Digital Fusion has delivered before albeit with a less than well received effort when they launched the CrunchPad/JooJoo .

  • Marsha September 13, 2011, 9:21 am

    I remember when the iPad first came out. Even though some blasted it for not having a full Mac desktop OS, many were shocked that the entry price of $499 was so “cheap”. Apple set a new price standard. Now that’s considered too high of a price for a new tablet to enter the market.

  • Ken Schoenberg September 13, 2011, 9:40 am

    @Marsha…I believe Apple is working on somewhere around 25% margins on the iPad and higher on the models with increased memory and 3G. Those are the kind of margins that companies that make Windows PCs drool for…I’m sure they saw Apple making a nice margin and said, “We should enter that market and we’ll get that to..” They forgot all about Apple’s marketing strength and that the iPod Touch and iPhone had been out for a couple of years already. Apple had a loyal audience, a fairly large number of compatible apps and an operating system that was fairly well fleshed out and stable…although not fully tablet optimized.
    I’m hoping that we start to see some manufacturers offer some tablets that are meant for a different market segment than the iPad (Samsung Note for instance) and others that can come up with a quality device at a lower pricer (Amazon, maybe). That will benefit us consumers by giving us far better choices than we have today.

  • Ian September 13, 2011, 3:09 pm

    Can someone confirm that this is an UNLOCKED 3G device? If so it’s quite a bargain.

  • Ken Schoenberg September 13, 2011, 3:39 pm

    I tweeted your question over to @fusiongarage and they stated it is unlocked and is compatible with T-Mobile and ATT. Of course you’ll need to supply the SIM card.

  • Ian September 13, 2011, 4:06 pm

    That’s one fast answer. Thanks

    If this product is standalone decent (and has a 10 hour battery) this unlocked feature is terrific. It even beats the new Archos as one has to buy their gsm unlocked “dongle” as an accessory and then it takes space that would be used for add on memory.

    I have calculated that by ditching many of my physical periodicals and newspapers I SAVE say $250.00 per annum by subscribing to the same electronically. So such a device would pay for itself within 1 1/2 years! Plus it gets the spouse off my back re “clutter”. Having an unlocked quad gsm also makes it a terrific device for international travel. It would replace my aging netbook for basic emailing and web browsing and a tablet weighs 50% less!

    My ultimate dream device is a 2012/13 time frame. That’s a really low weight, 10-11 inch ultra lappy weighing less than 2 1/2 lbs (as near 2 as possible) which could be used as a tablet for newspaper and periodical reading. (touch screen etc) and a lappy for general computing on the road.

    Note my e reader will always be a separate smaller and lighter and 30 day batter necessity.

  • Ken Schoenberg September 13, 2011, 8:20 pm

    @Ian, it’ll be interesting to see what they’ve done with the UI. They’re using Android as a base and they’ve said there will be some sort of compatibility Android apps, but they’re not saying which apps or for how long. The biggest I’m having with my Asus Transformer as a notebook replacement is the quality of the Office apps. For instance, none of the word processors available have spell checking. I’m not an Apple zealot, but I will say their “Pages” app is the best of breed so far. It’s almost a full-fledged word processor. The real shame is that Google hasn’t even ported a reasonable Docs app or website for Android yet.

  • Ian September 13, 2011, 8:56 pm

    Very good points re Google.
    I suspect they have all hands on deck getting their ice cream o/s out of the door on time and that’s pulled resources from the work you mention. Longer term all this is leaving a wide open door for Mr Softy. Their army is marching quickly and silently from Zune HD to Windows Mobile 7/Mango to Windows 8 and easy integration onto tablets witha high degree of interoperability. I suspect that in a years time Mr Soft will have really surprised a lot of people as they execute on their strategy.
    Meantime Apple’s attacks on Samsung look to be making Sammy and Softy highly motivated partners. Then Google will have to quickly play catch up (shocking to say that).

    I can’t wait though, I need a decent reasonably priced 10 inch tablet for the next 12+ months:) After that I suspect I will be salivating over a do it all MS run, do it all tablet/ultra, or whatever it gets called.

    Exciting times.

  • Ken Schoenberg September 13, 2011, 9:19 pm

    Ian, I agree people are writing off Microsoft. Most have forgotten what they did to established companies like Digital Research, Lotus, WordPerfect, Novell, Harvard Graphics, AshtonTate and Borland and how they caught up with net upstart Netscape very quickly. If they have someone on the product side with some vision Windows 8 could be a big-time game changer. iOS is popular and there are a lot of iPhones and iPads out there, Android is certainly seeing good distribution. But there are at least a billion machines running Windows XP+. That’s a very large potential audience for an OS that could bring true desktop functionality to the tablet and, in some ways, the phone.
    I’m not sure if MS has the leadership to pull it off though if Bill Gates isn’t really there…but it’ll be fun to watch.
    As for a reasonably priced tablet that may meet your needs. Take a look at the Asus Transformer…or their new Asus Slider. Tom’s Hardware just did a review…http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/transformer-tablet-notebook-android,3010.html.
    It’s a pretty solid device and at $399 a bargain.

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