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Report: Apple Tablet Delayed for OLED Panel

By - Source: Tom's Guide US | B 37 comments

If you were hoping to see an Apple tablet in the Spring, we have some bad news.

After months of reports claiming we'd see the Apple tablet in Q1 of next year, the latest rumor is that the device has been delayed until the second half of 2010. Oh, and Apple is also said to be developing a high end, OLED version that will retail for significantly more.

The latest gossip comes to us direct from Digitimes, which cites sources from component makers who say Apple has decided to switch some components and plans to launch a model using a 9.7-inch OLED panel from LG Display. These sources went on to point out that LG is currently making OLED panels using its 4.5G production line and the company's five-year $500 million contract with Apple includes supply of OLED panels.

Given that the cost of one of the OLED panels rings in at around $500 and panel costs normally account for about 30 percent of the device's total cost, the sources estimated that Apple's OLED tablet will cost between $1,500 and $1,700. This price is expected to drop to around $1,200 by the second half of next year, with the retail price for the device expected to be $2,000.

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  • 16 Hide
    JMcEntegart , November 20, 2009 1:23 PM
    huh89809This price is expected to drop to around $1,200 by the second half of next year, with the retail price for the device expected to be $2,000.does this make sense to anyone, or do i just need more sleep


    Cost for Apple expected to drop to $1,200, retail price estimated to be $2,000. You know, Apple tax and that. ;) 
  • 12 Hide
    Honis , November 20, 2009 1:41 PM
    How can a devices who's very existence isn't official be delayed for a release date that hasn't been made official?
  • 11 Hide
    doc70 , November 20, 2009 1:55 PM
    "If you were hoping to see an Apple tablet in the Spring, we have some bad news."

    No, I wasn't hoping for anything like that, so no bad news here.

    Whoever wants to see this happen, expect high Apple tax and limited hardware specs, along with limited practicality, kinda like the iToy, only bigger.
    AbrahmI still don't understand why this device is getting so much media coverage...


    Because it's Apple and it's on THG. You didn't get the memo?
Other Comments
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  • 4 Hide
    doomtomb , November 20, 2009 1:08 PM
    There's going to be an OLED and a cheaper LCD version. OLEDs cost less to produce once manufacturers get their act together... we are entering 2010, we should have this stuff by now...
  • 3 Hide
    Anonymous , November 20, 2009 1:13 PM
    This price is expected to drop to around $1,200 by the second half of next year, with the retail price for the device expected to be $2,000.

    does this make sense to anyone, or do i just need more sleep
  • 1 Hide
    masterasia , November 20, 2009 1:20 PM
    A giant iPod Touch. I want one.
  • 1 Hide
    christop , November 20, 2009 1:22 PM
    The price is a deal breaker to me.. Looks cool..
  • 16 Hide
    JMcEntegart , November 20, 2009 1:23 PM
    huh89809This price is expected to drop to around $1,200 by the second half of next year, with the retail price for the device expected to be $2,000.does this make sense to anyone, or do i just need more sleep


    Cost for Apple expected to drop to $1,200, retail price estimated to be $2,000. You know, Apple tax and that. ;) 
  • 0 Hide
    deadlockedworld , November 20, 2009 1:24 PM
    A delay? I bet Steve Jobs fired like 20 people over this. :-)
  • 9 Hide
    fonzy , November 20, 2009 1:26 PM
    I'm kinda of glad, the more companies that use OLED the faster the technology will progress and the faster prices will fall....hopefully.

  • 4 Hide
    Abrahm , November 20, 2009 1:37 PM
    I still don't understand why this device is getting so much media coverage...
  • 12 Hide
    Honis , November 20, 2009 1:41 PM
    How can a devices who's very existence isn't official be delayed for a release date that hasn't been made official?
  • 4 Hide
    jmchien , November 20, 2009 1:51 PM
    Uh correct me if my math is wrong, but the 30% panel cost would be for lcd... assuming the cost of the everything but the panel would not change then the addition of a more expensive panel would increase the percentage.
    Ex. computer costs $533 to build with LCD ($400 components + $133 lcd) then replacing with a $500 OLED the cost would be $400+$500 = $900 and the panel would be 55.6% of the total cost.
    unless the parts in the computer scale with the panel (highly doubt), the cost cost should be a few hundred dollars less than the $1500-$1700 prediction
  • 11 Hide
    doc70 , November 20, 2009 1:55 PM
    "If you were hoping to see an Apple tablet in the Spring, we have some bad news."

    No, I wasn't hoping for anything like that, so no bad news here.

    Whoever wants to see this happen, expect high Apple tax and limited hardware specs, along with limited practicality, kinda like the iToy, only bigger.
    AbrahmI still don't understand why this device is getting so much media coverage...


    Because it's Apple and it's on THG. You didn't get the memo?
  • 2 Hide
    kingssman , November 20, 2009 2:01 PM
    Quote:
    price for the device expected to be $2,000.

    Now That's the Apple I know and expected.

    so whats this gonna be, a macbook air with the screen flipped in backwards?
  • 0 Hide
    foody , November 20, 2009 2:02 PM
    It seemed like a pretty decent device before this. I personally don't want to pay a lot of money for low end system, even if it does have that "cool factor". I think they would sell a lot more of them if they were closer to $600 like it was rumored a while back. I mean, even if it is really cool and completely unique, it's still a low end computer.
  • 0 Hide
    zelannii , November 20, 2009 2:09 PM
    1) the current retail price of these displays might be $2,000, but OLED does cost less than LCD in manufacturing, and if Apple is essentially promising LG they'll buy a couple million of them (including payment in advance as is Apple's MO), then I doubt these panels will cost Apple in excess of $300-400 each in 10" or so sizes. The only reason they cost so much today is the cost to build the faciltiy vs expected return. If apple is guaranteing expected returns for LG, the factory will be on a mass scale very quickly, and this will also give LG a HUGE lead in the industry, being able to serll 10" OLED to others for half of Sony's prices at better than Sony's margins.

    2) the push for OLED is battery life the power savings are not that dramatic. Getting the same battery life out of the tablet as an OLED would mean a few ounces of battery tops, and maybe 1-2 ounces for the screen (the BULK of the unit will be the GLASS!) Shaving 4 oz and 1-2mm off a product does not warant a $500 increase in price... They can wait (and so can I) for cheaper prices and I'm willing to accept a heaview unit in the same form factor and function. Apple also desperately needs to be FIRST to market with such a device!

    3) Don't count on these rumors, this is very likey a Gen 2 product decision for the tablets, not a change to the initial release model. Casings manufacturing orders have also been leaked, and changing the screen would mean chaning those too...

    2) A base tablet is going to have to cost within $300 of an iPhone (after subsidy) to get any market traction if it also runs the iPhone OS and is limited to iPhone-like processing power. Apple would know this. A Mac-OS device in 10.x" factor with touch screen, and a full performance processor capable of everything a 13" macbook is just on a tablet in 10" might fetch the same or slightly higher price as a 13" macbook, but not much more, definetly lower priced than the Air (which is overpriced) (especially without a CD drive and other typical features). I don't think a full features OS X tablet could fetch more than $1500 unless it also packed a 9600GPU to go with it (unlikely).

    What I'm excited about most is not even having a large iPod touch, I'm excited about the rumored NFC implications when one of these is in proximity to a REAL mac. THAT'S where the power of the device is, other than that it would just be flashy (and honestly, I;d prefer a 7-8" media pad over a 9-10" one if that's all it;s going to be...)
  • 1 Hide
    gnesterenko , November 20, 2009 2:43 PM
    "Given that the cost of one of the OLED panels rings in at around $500 and panel costs normally account for about 30 percent of the device's total cost, the sources estimated that Apple's OLED tablet will cost between $1,500 and $1,700."

    Absolute fail. If panels normally cost about 30% of the device total cost, and 'normally' panels aren't OLEDs, how in the world does the increase in the cost of the panel drive up the other components cost by the same percentage? Who are these experts and where did they get their estimating skills from? If an LCD screen runs in at 30% of total cost, the proper conclusion to have made there would have been that OLED panels will simply make up a larger % of the total cost.

    So I think the cost to apple is grossly overestimated in this article. And I think it was done on purpose with Apples blessing, because I DO completely beleive they'll charge around $1700-$2000 for this device at their regular, very wide profit margins.

    "The views expressed here are mine and do not reflect the official opinion of my employer or the organization through which the Internet was accessed."
  • 1 Hide
    Niva , November 20, 2009 2:47 PM
    I want a larger one, like 15" that I can similar to how the Wacom Cintique works. Of course I'd also want it without the MacOSX software on it, very much prefer linux or windows on such a machine.
  • 1 Hide
    zak_mckraken , November 20, 2009 2:52 PM
    Quote:
    Oh, and Apple is also said to be developing a high end, OLED version that will retail for significantly more.

    That's more like it. I hardly believed Apple could sell a computer, even more a Tablet PC, for less than 700$, as previously expected.
  • 0 Hide
    El_Capitan , November 20, 2009 3:16 PM
    I want the LCD version for $1,200 if I can get it for $2,000 I will but OLED version isn't out so delayed to more if I can get.
  • 1 Hide
    Anonymous , November 20, 2009 3:19 PM
    why is there no keyboard on this thing? :[
    its like a giant itouch...
  • 2 Hide
    ravewulf , November 20, 2009 3:37 PM
    Quote:
    that will retail for significantly more

    Of course.

    No great loss anyway. I'll take my much more powerfull, $500 cheaper notebook that has a tablet mode (and a lot more capabilities)
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