Panasonic's New 4K Tablet Is 12X More Expensive Than Apple's iPad Air
Panasonic's (OTC: PCRFY) 20-inch 4K tablet will retail for $5,999 when it is released in January.
According to Engadget, the device (officially known as the Toughpad 4K) will come with an Ultra High-Definition 20-inch IPS Alpha LCD display with 3,840 x 2,560 pixels and 230 pixels per inch.
Panasonic claims that the five-pound tablet is "business-rugged" and can withstand a drop from 12 inches high from 26 different angles. If dropped on its back, the tablet can withstand a fall from 30 inches high.
The Toughpad 4K also comes with Bluetooth 4.0 support, one USB 3.0 port, an SDXC card slot and a smart card reader.
Unfortunately, the battery is only rated at two hours, so those who buy this tablet may also want to invest in a portable generator.
Investors might wonder why Panasonic would charge so much for its 20-inch tablet.
After all, the iPad Air -- one of the more advanced tablets available -- starts at $499. The iPad has less storage (16GB versus the Toughpad 4K's mammoth 256GB SSD), but consumers can purchase a 128GB iPad Air for less than $1,000.
Surface Pro 2, one of the more expensive tablets on the market, starts at $899. Consumers could purchase six of them for the price of one Toughpad 4K.
This is not the first time that Panasonic has charged more than its competitors, however. When the company released 3DO -- its first and only video game console -- it retailed for $699 in the United States. At the time, consoles from Nintendo (OTC: NTDOY) and Sega could be purchased for $200 or less.
Panasonic also charged a premium for its high-definition TVs. The company chose to support the expensive plasma format long after most of its competitors had shifted to the cheaper and more efficient LCD format.
Disclosure: At the time of this writing, Louis Bedigian had no position in the equities mentioned in this report.
Louis Bedigian is the Senior Tech Analyst and Features Writer of Benzinga. You can reach him at louis(at)benzingapro(dot)com. Follow him @LouisBedigianBZ
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