Giant chipmaker Intel is planning to play the 7-inch plus tablet game, hinting strongly of a Windows 8-powered tablet that will come out later this year that also showcases the revamped Atom microchip architecture.
This likelihood came directly from Intel big boss Paul Otellini, quipping this week that prices of Intel-based touch devices or tablet computers "are going to be down to as low as $US200."
Mr Otellini indicated too that these gadgets, purportedly to challenge the perceived supremacy to be established by Apple's iPad Mini 2 and Google's Nexus 7 later this year, will employ the power-efficient Atom mobile device CPU now dubbed as Bay Trail.
Now on a quad-core configuration, Bay Trail is the nearest that tablet users can get to Intel's premium multi-core CPU class without paying too much cash.
It is hoped that this new offerings from Microsoft and Intel will renew consumers' interests on the declining Windows 8 platform, which according to some experts is marching into alarming declines that could lead to its eventual demise.
Soon, Microsoft will update the operating system to accommodate needed upgrades such as the inclusion of support for higher rated GPU and CPU cores.
But what would serve as the main draw of the compact size and cheaper Windows 8 tablets against the tried and tested iPad Mini and Nexus 7 refreshes?
Windows tablets on Bay Trail "would be able to run legacy apps, Microsoft Office, and may have enough horsepower to spare to run some more intensive apps," Gotta Be Mobile said in a report.
It is a portable machine that encourages content consumption and productivity, the latter easily achieved by pairing with companion keyboards, the same report said.
The Bay Trail-powered Windows 8 tablet poses a serious threat to the cheap Android slates that presently proliferate, offering a serious alternative for price-sensitive buyers still aiming to grab a quality device.
This tablet class will likely start creeping into the vigorously exploding small tablet class by October this year, CNET said in a report.
It will run on the rumoured Windows Blue, with its $200 price tag potentially undercutting the tablet menus coming from Apple, Samsung, Google and Amazon.