If the rumors hold true, the greatest gadget (n)ever made — Apple’s famed tablet computer — won’t be landing in your hands until the second half of 2010. Assuming, of course, that it even exists. That’s the buzz in the blogosphere this morning courtesy of Digitimes, the Taiwanese source infamous for Apple product leaks. According to component makers, the tablet was originally scheduled for a March release next year, which has been pushed back to the second half of 2010 while Apple switches some components.
They also are ramping up plans to launch an alternate model with a 9.7” OLED screen from LG Display, which is part of their $500 million panel purchasing contract with Apple.
“The sources also indicated that in addition to Foxconn Electronics (Hon Hai Precision Industry), Quanta Computer and Pegatron Technology are expected to be manufacturing partners for Apple's two tablet PC models,” Digitimes sources revealed. “One of which will have a 10.6” TFT LCD panel while the other will have a 9.7” OLED panel.” Their sources didn’t break down how production for the two models would be split between the three makers.
While rumors of a sub-$1,000 Apple tablet have been rampant, DigiTimes sources are estimating a retail price more in the $2,000 range for the OLED model, while noting that price could be more flexible if bundled with a telecom provider’s 3G service — presumably AT&T, although rumors abound of Verizon being a tablet partner. The 10.6” LCD panel-based Apple tablet is still expected to land in the $800 to $1,000 range.