Analyst sees Apple unveiling ‘touch tablet’ device this year

Contrary to Piper Jaffray analyst Gen Munsters asserting of a 2010 debut for Apple’s rumored tablet device, Ezra Gottheil of Technology Business Research believes that Apple will unveil “a device priced between the lowest-end MacBook ($999) and the upper-end iPod touch ($399) this year,” Gregg Keizer reports for Computerworld.

“Back in March, Gottheil said Apple would likely use what he called an ‘iPod touch on steroids’ to compete with in the netbook market. Like Munster, he believed then that Apple would do without a physical keyboard and rely on multi-touch,” Keizer reports. “But he doesn’t think Apple will wait until 2010 to put something in customers’ hands.”

“Gottheil… thinks a touch tablet will come sooner. ‘I don’t think Apple is playing with a new processor,’ Gottheil said, ‘and although some upgrade [of the Mac OS] is necessary to support this functionality, I don’t see it as a year’s worth of work,'” Keizer reports.

“Rather than rely on another processor family for the tablet, Gottheil believes that Apple, which has made tighter ties to graphics chip maker Nvidia of late, will instead off-load some of the chores to the graphics processor,” Keizer reports. “‘I don’t quite see what will take so long,” Gottheil said, referring to Munster’s 2010 date… ‘They’ll have something this year,’ Gottheil predicted.”

Full article here.

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