Report: Apple to Announce Tablet in JanuaryBy eWEEK Staff | Posted 2009-12-28 Email Print
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With the news that Apple has rented a stage at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco for a major January announcement comes renewed speculation that the debut of the long-awaited Apple tablet device is at hand.
It doesn’t take much to get the Apple rumor mill spinning at full tilt, especially when it comes to hints and suggestions over the company’s long anticipated, never-officially-confirmed tablet device. While speculation has grown (and peaked, and subsided, and grown again) over the past couple of years, Apple has managed to successfully suppress any official details of the supposed tablet. However, the news that Apple has rented out a stage at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco has generated speculation that Apple is gearing up to announce a tablet-like device.
The report in the Financial Times blog quoted unnamed inside sources that said Apple rented the stage for several days toward the end of January, in preparation for "a major product announcement" on Jan. 26, a Tuesday. Other recent reports, including a research note by Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster, who said there is a 75 percent likelihood that Apple will have an event in January and a 50 percent chance that it would be held to launch the Apple Tablet, and a report in The Wall Street Journal which said Apple is briefing major media companies like CBS and Disney on a tablet-like device, suggest Apple may release the device during the first quarter of 2010.
Earlier this year, Munster issued a report suggesting that the tablet would feature a 7- to 10-inch screen and retail for between $500 and $700, effectively filling a strategic gap for Apple between the iPod Touch and its low-end Mac