Kaufman Brothers analyst Shawn Wu says checks with supply chain sources indicate that the Apple tablet will have a time frame similar to the original iPhone in 2007 with a January introduction and a launch in June. Minor issues with the life and durability of the battery are what is holding back the actual shipment of the device to June. In a report to investors, Wu says, "This tablet product has been described to us as a hybrid between an iPhone
and a mac but in terms of software and components, it appears closer to
the former, meaning it is most likely ARM based.. 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." The tablet is expected to cost $999 and use Wi-Fi instead of 3G to prevent further clogging up of the 3G pipelines. The analyst says that despite the lack of 3G, carriers could still offer subsidies to end users. Calling the product the "iSlate", Wu says that Apple intends to build 5 million units in the first year while he expects 1 million units to be sold each quarter.
The analyst's predictions differ sharply from the speculation offered by others on Wall Street. Piper Jaffray's Gene Munster expects the device to sell for $600 while the WSJ expects a 10 to 11 inch screen on the tablet with shipments starting in March.