updated 06:05 pm EST, Fri January 8, 2010
Second-quarter launch expected
Parts are on the move for Apple's forthcoming tablet, say sources in contact with ABC News. Touchscreens are already believed to be shipping, mainly from manufacturing partner Wintek, but also from the lesser-known Taiwanese outfit TPK Solutions. Casings for the tablet are said to be the responsibility of AVY Precision Technology, which will allegedly start producing them soon.
"Production of the cases will begin in February, so everything points to a second-quarter launch right now," says one of the sources. "It doesn't take that long for the company to assemble the PC together, but a second-quarter shipment date is what we're looking at now." Spokespeople for Apple, AVY and TPK have refused to comment on the matter.
Apple is almost universally expected to reveal the tablet later this month, at a press event in San Francisco. An early announcement is likely meant to retain the element of surprise, as it may be difficult or impossible to control the flow of information once products are being assembled. Many details of the tablet remain uncertain, such as whether it will use a 7-, 10- or 11-inch screen, or come with a built-in 3G receiver.