Milanesi declined to bet that Microsoft would slash Windows RT license prices -- or make the even more aggressive move of giving away the OS -- but said Microsoft has to do something to cut OEM costs.
"Unless [Windows tablets] can match the $199 price of Android tablets, it's going to be really hard for [Microsoft and its OEMs]," said Milanesi. Tablet pricing is polarized, she added, with Android at the bargain basement end and iOS at the top. That gives Microsoft a tough choice and less maneuvering room than it would have had had it entered the tablet market a year or year-and-a-half earlier. "From an app perspective, Microsoft can't get a premium for Windows RT," she added, referring to the relatively small size of the Windows Store and the lack of what she, and others, see as must-have, high-quality apps.