You are missing the whole point of technology altogether ... I don't want to buy a cheap tablet, I want cheaper services and information ... back when phones were those thing on the wall with a rotary dial, I didn't buy a phone because I wanted something hanging on my wall, I bought it because I wanted to talk and communicate with people.
I couldn't care less (and neither should smart phone manufactures) whether II get t these services through a conventional smart phone, a fancy pair of glasses, or through the filling in my teeth ... if a bunch of smart phone manufactures are forced out of the smart phone market because they can't compete on commodity pricing, then they let them come up with those magic fillings ... I'll pay more than I pay for the best smart phone on the market if they can sell me fillings that provide the same services and information .. and if that means that in two years from now "HTC smart fillings" put Apple, Google, Samsung, and Amazon out of business, then that's called 'progress'.
If at any time any single company gets too big a market share that impeds competition, then that's what 'combines/monopoly' laws are for, and I fully support using them (for which Google may be close to crossing the line, and if necessary they should be made to open up access to their search infrastructure.)
As for 'throwing fits' when one company can't lower their prices to match Google/Amazon, forgive me for being skeptical but it's tech media people like yourselves who are the ones who "throw the fits' ... where was this concern when Acer, HTC, et al were being pilloried for their price/performance failure? Why is it that you seem to notice this 'problem' only when when Apple runs into this issue?
Why aren't you just craping on Apple's inability to meet the price/performance mark like you would all the other mobile device makers? No, rather than just treating Apple like the rest of the 'slackers' and looking objectively at which product has superior price/performance ratings, instead it becomes a problem with the high performing manufactures for coming up with a better business model ... you are basically saying that Apple, with it's $100 Billion in the bank is doing us all a big favour by selling us the same damn product, over and over again, year after year, at a 40-60% profit margin.
P.l.e.a.s.e ... go sell your snake oil somewhere else .. I'm sure the Cult of Mac forums will eat this 'malarkey' up without question. Try over there.
I'm so tired of the technically challenged being the ones that get to spew nonsense to the technically illiterate ... the guy that changes my tires at the local 'big box' auto service center probably has more REAL qualifications to write about automobiles than the average tech 'journalist/blogger' on main stream tech media sites like Engadget, Tech Crunch, et al has writing about technology.