Subscribe to Newspaper, Get a Tablet for $99

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Image: Philadelphia Media Network

Missed out on the TouchPad firesale but still want a $99 tablet?

Subscribe to a newspaper instead. Philadelphia Media Network, which owns The Inquirer, Daily News and Philly.com, announced it will sell 5,000 Arnova 10 G2 tablets that run on Android for as low as $99 — provided you agree to buy discount subscriptions to their apps.

Purchasing a tablet requires a one- or two-year subscription to the apps. When totaling the value of the tablet, apps and subscription, the discount comes to more than half off retail value, according to philly.com. The tablet, which is not sold yet, has an expected retail price of $250, the media network said. The Inquirer and Daily News apps retail for $2.99 a week without a subscription.

When signing up for two-year subscriptions, customers pay $99 for the tablet and $10 every four weeks. This comes to $359, or more than 60 percent off the combined retail price. When signing up for a one-year subscription, customers pay $129 for the tablet and $13 every four weeks. The total is $298, more than half off.

“Today, we are presenting 5,000 Philadelphians with an opportunity to seize the future,” Osberg said at a news conference Monday. “We’ll be the first in this country, and we believe around the world, to offer this opportunity to consumers.”

Could developing hardware provide a business model for a dying industry criticized for lacking a business model? For the sake of journalists everywhere, let’s hope. If anything, at least there’s a cheap new tablet on the market soon. And it runs Android.

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