HTC Flyer

Best buy has released a statement saying that as of Oct.1, the price of the HTC Flyer (read our review) will drop from $499 to $299.  This is hot on the heels of a similar announcement about the BlackBerry Playbook, which also saw a $200 price drop to $299.  After seeing products sit on the shelves, and fire sales, and cheap competitors, it looks like retailers (and likely OEM's -- Best Buy isn't eating the entire loss I'm sure) have realized that there are a lot of people who want a tablet device, but don't want to spend $500-$800 on a Galaxy Tab 10.1 or an iPad. 

Now this is the part where things get interesting.  The Kindle Fire looks to be a huge hit with Android fans who want a stock tablet experience hacked in place for a couple Benjamins.  For $100 more, you get twice the storage, cameras, and the coveted SDcard slot.  The Flyer is already bootloader unlocked, and at this price development should take off like a rocket.  And for those that don't feel like rooting and fiddling with things, we already know that Honeycomb (and we assume Ice Cream Sandwich) is coming for the Flyer.  That decision just got tougher.

Source: Best Buy

Thanks, s2h2golf!

 
There are 84 comments

URPREY says:

The Kindle Fire is $199, so that's a $100 price difference (not $50). :-)

lol.  math fail.  I promise i can add and subtract :p

icebike says:

Further, the Kindle is far from "a stock tablet experience".

Its essentially a proprietary fork of Android at this point.

mjneid says:

for the extra 100.00 i'd opt for the flyer.

Why?

OrionAntares says:

Cameras, SD slot, physical volume rocker, more memory, full supported Google apps access, available at that price a month earlier. Take your pick!

bumpandrun says:

Trust me, being a an Evo 4G owner (not complaining in the least) I can vouch for the fact that you can't have enough onboard memory!

crxssi says:

I think you mean storage. The Evo 4G had enough memory.

DroidGnome says:

Not sure if the OP meant memory or storage.. but But I can tell you that it could use more of both.
Memory - RAM = More items running without having to wait for launcher refreshes because it shuffled em out of the memory stack. All it takes is to load up a gameloft or other high graphics game, and EVERYTHING seems to get pushed out of memory on my Evo.

Storage - Agree 100% Even with moving apps to the SD card, some portion of them remain on the phone, and after about 200-300 installed apps.. the internal memory tends to run out of room to even do updates. (Yes that was typed correct! I'm an app fiend haha)

ajonesma says:

I'd also opt for the flyer.

romma says:

I'd take the Flyer for the Android Market as well as storage and already hackable bootloader.

bsharitt says:

I would probably still consider a full featured tablet for $300 even with a Kindle Fire for $200, but I'd have to see both of them first.

that just goes to show... how much profit margin are in these things...! What other products can you discount 40% in a matter of months... ok... maybe a sweater...?

HAAS599 says:

Amazon instant video is a huge plus for the fire and the silk browser is great. I think I would get the Fire and put that other hundo on a prime membership and a $20 present to myself with free 2-day shipping.

crxssi says:

I think the Silk thing is a trap. They can spy on everything you do, modify or change anything they like, block stuff, inject ads, and it is 100% proprietary.

I don't think that is great, myself...

i1der says:

are you a terrorist? maybe you think people don't know what we do online, but that information is for grabs anytime my friend... Stop terrorizing our minds... Thanx

crxssi says:

That's right- anyone who values freedom and privacy is a terrorist or a wacko...

HAAS599 says:

So Amazon should risk a financial and PR disaster why?

bsharitt says:

I wouldn't be surprise to see amazon instant video rolled out in an app to all of Android(maybe in a new Kindle App that bundled all Amazon cloud services) since the services is where Amazon is going to make their money, not hardware. Though Amazon instant does work on any Android tablet with Flash already(and it ran fine on the Xoom for the short time I had it).

cheetokhan says:

Amazon Instant Video works fine on my Flyer.

jaykingofgay says:

is the stylus part of the $299 deal? It would be in their best interest to do that. It was stupid not to bundle them in the first place.

Robbzilla says:

Nah.... they jacked that up to $200 :D

The guy at Best Buy said he would knock it down from $80 to $50...I still couldn't bite on that deal.

DAS says:

$299 - $349 is what the price should have been in the first place.

I purchased the Flyer at $499 when it was first released, but took it back before the return period expired because at that price point it didn't take long to get "buyer's remorse."

In my opinion, $299 is a great price, but it's a bit too late in the game now. Many consumers have moved on with so many other choices.

I tell you one thing; Amazon sure has shaken things up. I think Samsung must rethink a $469 price tag for the 8.9 as well?

dskwerl says:

Would this be the WiFi only version, or does that include carrier-branded ones as well?

The Flyer is the wifi version of Sprint's HTC Evo View (32GB).

HalizDad says:

The Flyer is DEFINITELY worth $300.00

Argh, they are all 7 inch tablets. I would be happy if say the Acer Iconia 500 were to drop to $299. I mean it's a good sign that all of these tablets are finally starting to drop, but I'll be really excited when a 10.1 inch tablet drops.

Heck, I'd probably like the Samsung 8.9 Tab, but it's still more than I want to spend on a tablet.

DWR_31 says:

My ASUS Eee Pad Transformer cost me $300 + tax with a free Sprint Mifi + 2 year agreement. I was gonna pay $30 a month for the hotspot feature but with the deal Best Buy had it came out to $35 a month, cheaper tablet, and a extra device (with separate battery) that picks up Wimax signals better than my phone.
Glad I did it that way too, since the Mifi's still have truly unlimited data on 4G.

RamboDroid says:

Yeah i've wanted the Flyer for some time and planned on jumping on it when the price dropped but now I'm tempted to hold out for the Tab 7.7 I like what Sammy has done to honeycomb. And the big difference is the screen ratio and resolution. But most likely the Tab 7.7 will be like 399 or something so that might keep me a way. Also the flyer is very heavy compared to the 7.7..... Ugh!

englhard says:

Yeah, I agree with the 10.1 comments. I want the new HTC 10.1 Jetstream, WITHOUT 4G, just wifi, for $449. Heck, I'd even pay $499, but I think it should be at $449. So a 7"? Should be $199-$249. They will realize it eventually. More people will buy them too. And one other thing to compete against Apple with. Have all Android manufacturers have the same type of plug/connection. This would make for companies like Logitech and iHome to make cool accessories for Android makers instead of only for Apple!!! It drives me crazy that Google hasn't standardized on a universal connection just for things like that!!!!!!!

I don't really think the screen size will end up being a huge factor in regards to price with tablets since there is a demand for both large screen and smaller screen versions. Look at laptops...We are living in the age of paying a considerable amount more for lesser specs when buying a smaller laptop (just look at Samsung's 9 Series or, to a lesser extent, the Macbook Air).

Yeah, smaller laptops tend to be more expensive and I always thought it was simply because of having to put the same components of the larger computer into a smaller package. For instance it was actually difficult to find a good deal on a Dell 14R for my wife, but the 15R was always on sale and a lot of times cheaper than the 14R.

Robbzilla says:

Whether or not there is a price differential in manufacture is irrelevant. The perception is that a 7" tab isn't worth as much as a 10" tab. I even feel the same. At $400, I'll buy an Asus Transformer long before the HTC Flyer.

Gekko says:

a tablet for me would be a tertiary device choice for me at best - Netbook, Smartphone, THEN maybe get a tablet. and i certainly would not pay more for a tablet than i would for a full Win7 Netbook.

i like my little $200 full Win7 Netbook with full Office Excel/Word etc. and full Windows and a real keyboard.

i'd pay $200 maximum price for a tablet and it better have at least a 10" display. they'll get there eventually.

jaykingofgay says:

I get what you're saying, but you're comparing apples and oranges. Yes you can get all that in a $200 netbook, but you know what you can't get with all that? a Touchscreen. Soon as you add a multitouch touchscreen, gorilla glass, and wide viewing angles, your netbook would add 600-800 to the pricetag. Take a look around. You're going to have a hard time finding a touchscreen win7 netbook for under $1k.

I know it's easy to forget, but think about it this way. The difference between a netbook and tablet hooked up to a keyboard and mouse? Take away the keyboard and mouse from both the netbook and the tablet and the netbook becomes completely useless garbage ---but the tablet works just fine.

Gekko says:

@jayking - i hear you but i guess i just don't need/want a tablet and/or a touchscreen 10" device. i love my touchscreen EVO 4G and i love my touchscreen Lexus Navigation. maybe in the future my needs/wants will change.

where i think the tablet shines is for travelers (air, train, bus etc.), very old people, very young people, and people who like to read books and/or watch movies on the go - or just want basic internet and email - this is not me. for people who want true Excel and Word, a full keyboard, full Win7 at all times in their "secondary" device (to their PC) - the tablet is not a fit. and that is where i am at this time. to each his own.

i1der says:

you should try Google DOC's it makes Office Excel/Word a thing of the past... My 2cents

Gekko says:

@i1der - Google Docs is good but not quite there yet - not quite good enough to replace Word and Excel for me - especially Excel. i work with some advanced spreadsheets with advanced formulas that Docs just can't do. maybe someday.

Dhalgren says:

We've been waiting for this, boys and girls: a honeycomb tablet confirmed for the ICS upgrade at $299. This is a happy day.

hmmm says:

I'd consider a full tablet over the Fire for even up to $50 more if it had a front facing camera.

nfkraemer says:

Google Maps, Gmail, G+, Google Voice, the market, GPS, Cameras, and SD card is what justify me paying the extra 50 bucks!

Commodus says:

It's definitely a better value now, although when you cut the price 40 percent, that's a pretty good sign it hasn't been selling that well. I'm sure the Flyer still costs less than $300 to make, but HTC's probably not making much money on it now.

BruhMan says:

To all opening day junkies that like to spend money... this is why patience wins.

flashpiti says:

The reason why all these Android tablets have and will continue to sell poorly is that they haven't made a compelling argument to consumers why they should buy one. Apple focuses their ads entirely on this, and now Amazon is doing the same. Things haven't got interesting, they've just stayed the same, now at a lower cost, which is still too much for a consumer to pay.

What does the iPad do that's so much different from the Android tablets? Quite frankly the only reason I haven't bought a tablet yet is because of the price. I don't like the idea of a laptop and a tablet with lesser specs being close to the same price.

Dhalgren says:

I really think what has driven the iPad is its integration with iTunes, the fact that it was first to the market, and it's an Apple product. Otherwise, I totally agree with you. Android tablets can stream movies, play music, view photos, maps, and calendars. In terms of marketing and market share, they have a steep uphill battle. But in terms of price point and size segmentation, they just won the advantage.

jaykingofgay says:

the iPad was not the first to market. Tablet PCs have existed for about a decade, possibly longer. The first rule of apple is "NEVER be first to market".

Yeah, I sold tablet pcs when I worked at Best Buy from 2004 to 2007. Toshiba had a 12.1 inch one that cost about $2200-$2500. The only thing Apple did was strip down the functionality as much as they thought the consumers would be okay with and make it more affordable to the average consumer.

DWR_31 says:

Case and point = Xooooooom!!!!!!

raggioazzura says:

Buying. The only obstacle to my purchase of the Flyer was its price. Come this Christmas, I'm gonna have two HTCs in my lineup- HTC Flyer and HTC Incredble 3 4G!!

mitchellvii says:

Unfortunately, the pen still costs $100 (and it doesn't even work very well - very laggy).

The 7" tablets are taking off because you can easily hold it in one hand as you write and (HUGE 'and' here), a man can carry it is his pants or jacket pocket. Considering that most men do not carry purses, a full sized tablet is pretty much impossible to transport casually.

mitchellvii says:

What I REALLY want is the GALAXY NOTE. It is the perfect size and power - small enough for the pocket and big enough to write on.

Hopefully it will come to the USA soon.

dkotoric says:

The GALAXY NOTE just passed through FCC with ATT bands so that's a good sign.

DAS says:

Are you sure it's the Galaxy Note that passed through the FCC, and not the Galaxy W?

I couldn't find anything to support your comment. But oh how I wish it were true.

DAS says:

I echo your comments. I too want the Galaxy Note.

Last week I purchased the SGSIISE4GT, and at a 4.52 screen size I don't use my Tab 10.1 nearly as much.

The Galaxy Note with a 5.3 inch screen size, slim form factor, phone, and writing functionality, would be just perfect as the all-in-one device.

I hope a carrier picks it up next year. I will buy it as soon as it becomes avaialable.

cheetokhan says:

I love my Flyer but I would swap it for a Galaxy Note in a heartbeat.

GripnRip says:

I still think Asus had the price right for a 10 inch tab at $399. I got mine at launch and still love it. No buyers remorse and still think the price is right.

Robbzilla says:

Yeah, that's the one I'm seriously considering... After I pay for my Epic touch... :)

nfkraemer says:

I am still waiting to hear more news about the Asus Transformer 2, thinking that the original might drop in price even more, or decide to wait for the new hardware.

s2h2golf says:

I made it to the front page! I am picking one up today for $499 and then will have Best Buy price match it later when I have more time. I have a Galaxy Tab 7" that I picked up for $279 that has to go back today to get my refund in under 30 days. For $20 more than the Samsung, this is a great buy - I would gladly pay $100 more for a full featured tab - I've played around with tabs that didn't have GPS, the Market, no SD card and they are difficult to use compared to a full-blown Google experience tab. Just my opinion.

jtnave says:

I'm doing the same thing! Although, I'm a little torn with the Acer A100 now at BB. It's got the Dual-Core Tegra2 (but 512mb) as opposed to the single core and 1GB in the Flyer. A100 is $30 more... What do you guys think would be the better choice of a 7' tablet?

s2h2golf says:

Micro Center is currently running the Acer A100 for $279 and Best Buy will price match. I went to Best Buy the other day and played around with the Acer - it was nice, but the screen didn't seem as responsive and smooth as even my Tab 7" - it was faster, just didn't feel right. Plus I have an Acer netbook and thinking about the build quality of it compared to my Motorola Atrix or my Tab, I'm going with the Flyer - HTC, Motorola, Samsung - they are all well built. Not so sure about the Acer.

jtnave says:

Sadly, no Micro Centers around. I'll have to try it out. I do like the build quality of the HTC better than the crappy blue swirly back of the A100.

Wildo6882 says:

Now we're finally talking, although I'd still like a full-featured Android tablet around the $200 mark. I can't justify spending $500 for ANY tablet. To me, it's essentially a toy that will replace my phone when I get home from work and plop my butt on the couch. I really want one to satisfy my tech desires, but it is essentially a toy. They do very little that a netbook or laptop can't do, and I have one of those. It's also much easier to convince my wife that I need a $200-300 toy over a $400-600 one. :)

rizzay1 says:

This is a nice move by HTC to come out with it at a high price for the HTC fans to grab then drops the price for all the people that are "price" fans. I would get the flyer if I wasn't eye balling the galaxy tab.

angryGTS says:

Played with one yesterday, if only it had Honeycomb--- unless the store model was never updated.....

jaykingofgay says:

Honeycomb ain't all it's cracked up to be. It's got glitches, bugs, and many apps aren't optimized for it. Sure, they'll say they're honeycomb ready, but you get the app on your tab, open it up and it's rendering at the same size as on a phone. So a teeny tiny app window surrounded by black screen.
The ones that do render full size are often just elongated versions of the phone app. Like G+ is just set to fill the screen, it's not pixelated, but wide thin buttons aren't as useful as you'd think.

Robbzilla says:

Good to know.

readable says:

I found the same thing. I tried the Acer for 5 days. I am loving the flyer.

AZDROIDX says:

This is interesting, I love my Xoom and all. I may root it again one day, even though it's not as easy to find Devs like my Tbolt. But I think 10.1 tablet may be too much for everyday use like seating in front of couch multitasking. Lol. My wife and younger teen can do about everything I do on their NC I rooted for them, they each have different Dev. ROM's on the them. Iv'e always thought about just selling Xoom and picking up 2 more NC's for family, this Flyer will be better!

RamboDroid says:

Quote below is taken from the last two lines of the original A|C review that's linked in the above post.

LOL

"As lovely and unique as the Flyer is, this is currently the main barrier to its success. At £100 or so less, it’d be a much more attractive proposition."

That's why we love Alex (that, and the James Bond accent).  He can see the future :)

dethduck says:

So, if this is the result of the Kindle Fire's price point,
would that make this a...
...
Wait for it...
...
A Fire Sale!

scaots says:

Tempting... This is the right price but too late. My next phone will have higher resolution (Nexus?) And maybe more accurate stylus (Galaxy Note). Pen is still way too pricy.

jormathog says:

As much as I like the 7 inch size. For $300 why would I buy this device over something like the Acer A100? The A100 has Honeycomb and a dual core CPU. I'd say there is also a better chance of the A100 getting ICS then the flyer.

wheelah says:

That bothered me, too, at first. However, the EVO View runs faster and more fluidly than my dual core Transformer. The light weight vs the A100 & knowing Ice Cream Sandwich is on the way helps me sleep at night.

DWR_31 says:

A tablet should have a tablet OS with official tablet specs.
My view on the Flyer is equal to a 7" HTC Sensation.

HalizDad says:

That makes one HELLUVA ereader...That will be the main function of mine, WITH the full market, withOUT having to root my NC and screw it up again. It's well worth the $50.00 price increase over a $249.00 Nook Color. (NC) This is going to KILL the Kindle Fire sales for people who want a new ereader. Why? Because you can download the Kindle software from the market and read all the .mobi books you want, along with the Aldiko Pro (kickass ereader prog) and read all the ePub files you want, too. I test drove a Flyer, Thrive, G-tab 10.1, Acer 10", and one of those HP tabs when it first came out. The only one I really liked was the Flyer, but I didn't like spending $500.00 for it, plus another $80.00 for the pen. I'll spend $300.00 for it and use it as an ereader first, and a tab second. Lucky me!

P.S. The Flyer battery lasted me all day playing music, surfing the web, and reading books no problem. My Nook Color doesn't.

I happened to pass by a Best Buy this morning (they're open 24hrs during the weekend). And I showed them this article...and happily walked out with an HTC Flyer for $299 (plus tax of course). Thank you guys for the heads up. I wanted the Flyer ever since I read the review here, but just couldn't swallow that $500 price tag.

crsmith says:

I picked my Flyer up this morning at Best Buy. They had no clue about the price drop. This is a great little device.

readable says:

Just picked up one. Best thing I did. I gave the Acer A100 ago. A bit slow. Battery ok but you can only charge with it's charger.

On the other hand, the Flyer...
Great battery life
Cool notebook feature - handwriting notes - not a drawer
Recharge using any HTC charger.
Plus since it is 2.3, I can use my apps I bought for my phone.
FAST.

Thanks for the tip. I rushed to bestbuy Saturday and could not be happier.

wheelah says:

It's a little embarrassing to admit, but I got the Sprint variant -- EVO View -- on Home Shopping Network for the same $299. A tablet on contract seems like a foolish move at first blush, but it has replaced the o.g. EVO as my primary device for about $20 less per month (thanks to Google Voice and Groove. It could be even less once I determine my baseline data usage.