Apple engineers have reportedly become frequent visitors to China – and plan even more over upcoming holidays. The report, based on unnamed sources, is just the latest rumor the Cupertino, Calif. company is planning to unveil a Tablet Mac.
“A source tells us a system integration engineer friend of his at Apple has been ramping up his travels back and forth between China lately, broadcasting word of his travels over the Internet,”,” according to Business Insider. One of Apple’s best-known China-based hardware makers, Foxconn supposedly has marching orders to produce 300,000 tablet devices (which the NYTs calls ‘Slate’) each month.
Other tidbits tend to flesh-out what Apple may be planning for its tablet. Unlike previous hardware, which relies on owners to add music, video or other content, one Australian analyst believes the tablet will come preloaded with content and take direct aim at Amazon’s Kindle.
Unlike Amazon, which asks 70 percent of ebook revenue, Apple is hoping to attract more publishers by requiring just 30 percent of the cut from ebooks for its tablet.
For months, talk has swirled around Apple introducing in early 2010 a 10-inch tablet that some have described as a “jumbo iPod touch.”
In related news, Apple reportedly has settled on a company to produce batteries for the tablet. C-Tech, a China-based maker of batteries for notebooks and phones, has its eye on making batteries for ebooks.