The first big-name competitor to the iPad in the U.S. won't be undercutting it in price.
Verizon Wireless on Wednesday said it will start selling Samsung Electronics Co.'s tablet computer, which is half the size of the iPad, for $600. That's more than the basic version of Apple Inc.'s tablet.
Verizon will start selling the Samsung Galaxy Tab on Nov. 11. It has screen that measures 7 inches diagonally and runs Google Inc.'s Android software. Access to Verizon's cellular data network will cost $20 per month for up to 1 gigabyte of traffic. The tablet has two cameras, which could be used for videoconferencing. The iPad has no camera.
Verizon will start selling the iPad on Oct. 28, starting at $499. It can't access Verizon's network directly, but the carrier will sell an add-on gadget for about $130 that bridges the gap, with the same $20 data plan.
Apple CEO Steve Jobs made a rare appearance on Apple's earnings conference call on Monday. He slammed both Android and the notion of 7-inch tablets, calling them "dead on arrival." Their screens are not big enough to justify the step up from a smart phone, he said.
Apple calls its own pricing for the iPad "aggressively low," with margins less than most of its other products.
Google itself hasn't encouraged the use of Android in tablets, saying that it's designed for smart phones and that hardware makers should wait for a version adapted for tablets.
AT&T Inc. already sells a somewhat smaller hybrid of a tablet and a smart phone, the Dell Streak. It costs $300 with a two-year contract.
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