WSJ: Apple to Release Tablet in March for $1,000 (Maybe Including WiFi)

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Apple is planning to announce its long-rumored tablet in January, but will not be releasing it until March, according to The Wall Street Journal. Citing sources who claim to have been briefed on the device by Apple, the newspaper reported that it will be priced at $1,000, come with a 10 - to - 11 inch screen, and that the price might include a nationwide WiFi subscription.

The Journal's sources also said that Apple was testing two different finishes, but it is unclear if this means Apple is working on multiple versions or trying to pick between the two.

Rumors of an Apple tablet device have swirled hot and heavy for more than a year now, with the latest reports saying that Apple will announce the device during a media event in late January of this year. Apple has yet to announce that media event, nor has it acknowledged that it is working on a tablet device.

Today's report from The Journal bring together several recurring themes in tablet leaks, speculation, and rumors, including the 10 inch (plus) screen, the price tag of $1,000, and the January time frame for an announcement. This is one of the first reports we've seen that said the purchase price might include a WiFi subscription, and it's among the first to pinpoint March as the release date.

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John Martellaro

The Wall Street Journal, huh?  One of Apple’s favorite publications.  This WSJ story has to be considered a controlled leak with Apple’s blessing.

Bryan Chaffin

That could be, John, but note that the piece was written by two of their top tech reporters, as opposed to, say, columnist Walt Mossberg.

Still, I can’t help but think that Apple has been behind at least some of the leaks we’ve seen. It’s hard to tell, of course, and it could just be that this product has needed more outside partners than anything else Apple has launched, which is is what has resulted in all these leaks.

John Martellaro

Naturally.  That keeps Walt safe and above suspicion.


$1000 is like the kiss of death.  I hope Apple is not back on the “insanely high” pricing model that stunted the Mac when it first came out in ‘84.  It’s not as if the short-lived $600 iPhone is ancient history too.

Pricing it at 1 G seems to me like a really stupid thing to do.  If it’s true, that is.


Does this make any sense? + Apple device


They’re floating a thousand to adjust people’s expectations. You can’t have all the things people are dreaming about for 600. I think it will come in at 899 for the base model and 1099 for the high end. And they’ll sell every one they make.


1 grand a bit pricey but depends on what it can do. Bluetooth and wireless are very important. Am hoping for an SD slot too. Don’t really care about being tied to a carrier like the iPhone is to crappy AT&T. I do want one but the deal breaker will be if its tied to a carrier.


I am putting my money down on that if the mac tablet comes in at $1K, then it will herald the return of the name “iBook”, and the name iSlate will be quickly forgotton.


Honestly, at that price it won’t be any kind of Kindle killer, and why would the netbook crowd pay when a fully functional MacBook with full OS X (and even limited multi-touch functionality) costs about the same? I don’t doubt that they would still sell well, and I understand the logic as it is an integrated device (screen, etc.) but $1,000 isn’t going to get it into the hands of the masses. The iPhone was truly and utterly unique when it debuted, and could thusly fetch a premium price. At this stage of the game, the tablet, not so much, IMHO. Guess we’ll have to wait and see what they reveal . . . I sure hope it isn’t the Cube part 2, because that would really be too bad.


The iPhone was truly and utterly unique when it debuted, and could thusly fetch a premium price.

Agreed. Heck, throw another wrench into it if it includes cellular connectivity, and it can be subsidized.

Imagine the late Don LaFontaine with this movie trailer voice-over: Apple Computer presents: “The Cube-Part 2”—Rated R for self-inflicted violence….Heaven forbid.

Paul Bass

$1000 is way to much for anything in this size. I’m looking towards more like $400-500.

Also, the lack of an included cellular modem surprises me.

John Whittet

The 8GB 3GS iPhone costs $500 (16GB: $600; 32GB: $700)[1]. What on earth makes you think a bigger, faster, untethered device would be priced at or below the iPhone?

How much would you pay for a 10” MacBook Air? That’s how much you’re going to be paying for a tablet. You’re not going to own an iPhone, an iSlate, and a MacBook. If you want a keyboard, MacBook; if you don’t, iSlate.


[1] That’s the price without AT&T contract. Anyone who thinks $200 is the actual cost of the device has no idea why they’re paying $80/mo. to AT&T.[2]

[2] Even those of us who understand subscription-based accounting are still wondering why we’re paying AT&T. ZING!


[2] Even those of us who understand subscription-based accounting are still wondering why we?re paying AT&T. ZING!

What does subscription-based accounting have to do with ATT? The reason for that accounting method has NOTHING to do with the iPhone being a phone or having a contract with ATT. For one thing, ALL iPhone sales, including unlocked phones sold without contracts (e.g., Singapore) are counted that way. For another, the Apple TV is is also subject to subscription accounting.

Subscription accounting was used because Apple wanted to be able to add major features to the Apple TV (and, later, the iPhone) via free firmware updates. (iPod touch owners have to PAY for these updates.) Not long ago, Apple released an update that turned on the built-in 802.11n capability in Intel Macs. They were forced to charge for the update. (I think it was $1.95, though one could get the update free if one had bought an Airport base station after a certain date.) They could avoid that mess by essentially saying that they were providing the product piecemeal. Rather than try to figure out the value of each upgrade, they elected to spread the income out over the “life” of the product, which they defined as 2 years.

It would be like a car company selling you a car that is supposed to have a radio, but there’s none installed. They promise to install the radio later at no additional charge. From an accounting basis, they could not realize the full purchase price right away. They would have to defer part of that income until the radio was installed.


$1K sounds right. Remember, Apple is NOT for the masses. It’s an aspirational brand and as such, it cannot be available for cheap.

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