Apple expected to release tablet on 27 January

Apple will host a special event on 27 January where it is widely expected to unveil its tablet computer, as the company looks to extend its hot hand into a brand new product category.

The event next week is shaping up as Apple's most eagerly anticipated product launch since the iPhone three years ago.



The company has never acknowledged the existence of the tablet, but rumours and speculation have been building for months.



Although few details about the tablet are known for certain, the device is said to resemble a large version of the iPhone, with a roughly 10-inch touchscreen.



Analysts say such a device would try to bridge the gap between smartphones and laptops, allowing users to stream video, surf the Web and play games while on the go.



Cost estimates on the tablet - which analysts expect to begin shipping in March or April - run upwards of $1,000 (£610).



Tablet computers have never managed to catch on with consumers, and industry watchers say Apple will have to offer a compelling reason to buy such a device.



If consumers do gravitate to the tablet, it could also propel Apple into the digital book market popularized by Amazon.com's Kindle e-reader, analysts say.



The Wall Street Journal reported on Monday that HarperCollins Publishers, a unit of News Corp, is negotiating with Apple to make electronic books available for the tablet device, citing people familiar with the situation.



HarperCollins is expected to set the prices of the e-books, with Apple taking a percentage of the sales, the Journal reported on its website. Other publishers have also met with Apple, the paper said.



A HarperCollins spokeswoman did not immediately return a call and email seeking comment on the Journal report. An Apple spokesman declined to comment.



The tablet category is certainly seeing plenty of interest from Apple's competitors of late.



The Consumer Electronics Shows in Las Vegas earlier this month was practically bursting with tablets - or "slates" as some were called - many of them prototypes, from companies like Hewlett-Packard, Dell and Lenovo Group Ltd.



Analysts said Apple's rivals were trying to steal some of its thunder ahead of the tablet launch.



Although there is plenty of skepticism about the tablet category as a whole, Wall Street has been fairly upbeat on the prospects for Apple's device, and shares have run up in recent weeks as new information about the device cropped up in various media reports.



Apple's shares closed at $205.93 (£125) on Friday, roughly $10 below its all-time high. Markets in the United States were closed Monday for the Martin Luther King Jr holiday.



Oppenheimer analyst Yair Reiner has estimated the Apple tablet could boost its earnings per share by 25 cents to 38 cents per quarter. His estimate assumed sales of 1 million to 1.5 million units per quarter at an average price of $1,000 (£610).



Suppliers for Apple's new tablet computer have begun shipping touchscreen panels and will start delivering aluminum casings for it in February, sources told Reuters earlier this month, implying a second-quarter product launch.



Next week is shaping up as a big one for Cupertino, California-based Apple. The company is set to release its quarterly results on 25 January.



Apple sent an email invitation to reporters on Monday for the 27 January media event, which will be held at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts Theater in San Francisco.



The invitation did not give any details. It said only, "Come see our latest creation."



Apple spokesman Steve Dowling declined to provide any comment beyond the invitation.



Apple is famous for its splashy media extravanganzas, where Chief Executive Steve Jobs takes to the stage to show off the company's latest consumer device.



The Yerba Buena Center theater is the same one the company used last September to show off new iPods, where Jobs made his first public appearance after his medical leave.

Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookA delicious collection of 50 meaty main courses
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Gadgets & Tech

    Recruitment Genius: IT Support Engineer - 2nd & 3rd Line

    £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The IT Support Engineer is needed to ass...

    Recruitment Genius: Junior / Mid Software Developer

    £22000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

    Recruitment Genius: IT Service Desk Manager

    £35000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A great opportunity to join a p...

    Recruitment Genius: Graphic and Motion Designer

    Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: Do you get a buzz from thinking up new ideas a...

    Day In a Page

    Refugee crisis: David Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia - will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi?

    Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia...

    But will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi, asks Robert Fisk
    Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

    Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

    Humanity must be at the heart of politics, says Jeremy Corbyn
    Joe Biden's 'tease tour': Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?

    Joe Biden's 'tease tour'

    Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?
    Britain's 24-hour culture: With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever

    Britain's 24-hour culture

    With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever
    Diplomacy board game: Treachery is the way to win - which makes it just like the real thing

    The addictive nature of Diplomacy

    Bullying, betrayal, aggression – it may be just a board game, but the family that plays Diplomacy may never look at each other in the same way again
    Lady Chatterley's Lover: Racy underwear for fans of DH Lawrence's equally racy tome

    Fashion: Ooh, Lady Chatterley!

    Take inspiration from DH Lawrence's racy tome with equally racy underwear
    8 best children's clocks

    Tick-tock: 8 best children's clocks

    Whether you’re teaching them to tell the time or putting the finishing touches to a nursery, there’s a ticker for that
    Charlie Austin: Queens Park Rangers striker says ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

    Charlie Austin: ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

    After hitting 18 goals in the Premier League last season, the QPR striker was the great non-deal of transfer deadline day. But he says he'd preferred another shot at promotion
    Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

    How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

    Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
    Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

    'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

    In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
    Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

    The Arab Spring reversed

    Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
    King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

    Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

    Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
    Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

    Who is Oliver Bonas?

    It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
    Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

    Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

    However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
    60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

    60 years of Scalextric

    Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones