Apple tablet 'could be delayed' by six months
The Apple tablet might be delayed from going on sale for six months, according to a new note to investors.
The much anticipated tablet-style computer, expected to be announced at an event in San Francisco on January 27, might not hit shelves until June because of battery life issues and durability.
According to a new note to investors, written by analyst Shaw Wu, from Kaufman Bros, the actual sale of the device could be delayed due to these “minor issues”.
The note, as seen by AppleInsider, said the launch of the tablet could follow the same pattern of the launch of the original iPhone in 2007 – with a January unveiling and then shipping to consumers six months later.
Wu said the product was like a “super” iPod touch. "This tablet product has been described to us as a hybrid between an iPhone/iPod touch and a mac but in terms of software and components, it appears closer to the former,” he wrote.
"From our understanding, it is not intended to replace a Mac but be somewhat of a 'super' iPod touch where video, gaming, web browsing, e-books and the ability to run multiple apps would be enhanced with the much larger screen."
However, a different report in The Wall Street Journal, citing “people briefed on the matter” as its source, said the tablet was due to go on sale two months after being unveiled – which would mean consumers could purchase and receive the tablet by March.
Wu estimated the tablet will cost $999 (€707), which includes a $100 incremental cost for a large touchscreen. But other analysts have said the price will be lower, costing an average of $600 (€425). There is a common consensus that it will definitely cost less than $1000.
Wu also predicted that Wi-Fi would be the “most likely option” for network access as opposed to 3G – which he said was already “strained”.
The January 27 event is taking place at the Yerba Buena Centre for the Arts in San Francisco and starts at 10am.
Apple's chief executive, Steve Jobs, is expected to take the stage to make the announcement in what will be his highest profile appearance since returning to work after a liver transplant last summer.
The tablet is expected to feature a 10in screen, with all the same features and functionality as Apple's iPhone and iPod touch.
Several websites have quoted sources close to the project as saying that the tablet will also be used as a home entertainment hub for gaming, watching movies and listening to music.
The company has so far refused to comment on rumours that it is working on a tablet computer, but many industry experts believe it is a logical move for the technology company.