Feeds

AT&T to service Apple's fabled tablet?

So imply Chinese moles

The smart choice: opportunity from uncertainty

Apple is prepping a 9.6-inch touch-screen tablet that will include snappy wireless hardware - although it appears that AT&T's struggling infrastructure may be chosen to service the li'l fellow.

That is, if the latest round of rumors out of Taiwan are true. The Taiwan Economic News today reported that the tablet will run between $799 and $999 when it hits the shelves early next year, and will be powered by a chip developed by the PA Semi team that Cupertino acquired last year.

The TEN report focuses on the Taiwanese suppliers that have won contracts to serve up parts for the overgrown iPhone, but there are intriguing tidbits to be gleaned from its reportage.

For example, battery-maker DynaPak, according to the report, has won an exclusive contract to supply "up to 300,000" battery packs per month for the tablet. Even the most math-challenged can divine that Apple is targeting a top-end of 3.6 million tablet sales during a year of that contract.

The report's mention of PA Semi is no surprise, however, considering that shortly after acquiring that company, Apple CEO Steve Jobs told The New York Times that "PA Semi is going to do system-on-chips for iPhones and iPods."

No, the purported tablet isn't specifically an iPhone or iPod, but it almost certainly would share their lineage.

What is interesting is the report's mention of high-speed downlink packet access (HSDPA), a downlink technology that, when linked with enhanced uplink (EUL) tech, is known simply as HSPA.

And 7.2Mbps HSPA is the technology that Apple's exclusive iPhone partner, AT&T, is desperately scurrying to upgrade to in the US, along with a backhaul infrastructure upgrade to handle the increased bandwidth.

If the TEM report is accurate, US iPhone users grumbling over AT&T's spotty and feature-cramped service may be joined early next year by Apple tablet users grumbling over AT&T's spotty and feature-cramped service.

But, of course, it's wise to take any rumors of an imminent tablet with an entire shovel-load of NaCl. Rumors of the elusive item have been swirling since at least November 2002 - although they've grown louder in recent months.

Here at The Reg, for example, we've reported on other Chinese rumors in March, May and July; an analyst's touchy-feely experience; purported photos of the device itself; a generic place-holder name in a plist file; and other rumblings.

The consensus points to early next year. Until then, Apple fanbois will have to content themselves with singing along with Tony from West Side Story:

Something's comin', I don't know what it is
But it is
Gonna be great!

We'll see. ®

Eight steps to building an HP BladeSystem

More from The Register

next story
Auntie remains MYSTIFIED by that weekend BBC iPlayer and website outage
Still doing 'forensics' on the caching layer – Beeb digi wonk
Major problems beset UK ISP filth filters: But it's OK, nobody uses them
It's almost as though pr0n was actually rather popular
Microsoft unsheathes cheap Android-killer: Behold, the Lumia 530
Say it with us: I'm King of the Landfill-ill-ill-ill
All those new '5G standards'? Here's the science they rely on
Radio professor tells us how wireless will get faster in the real world
Apple orders huge MOUNTAIN of 80 MILLION 'Air' iPhone 6s
Bigger, harder trouser bulges foretold for fanbois
Oh girl, you jus' didn't: Level 3 slaps Verizon in Netflix throttle blowup
Just hook us up to more 10Gbps ports, backbone biz yells in tit-for-tat spat
GoTenna: How does this 'magic' work?
An ideal product if you believe the Earth is flat
Telstra to KILL 2G network by end of 2016
GSM now stands for Grave-Seeking-Mobile network
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.