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Microsoft Pri0

Welcome to Microsoft Pri0: That's Microspeak for top priority, and that's the news and observations you'll find here from Seattle Times technology reporter Matt Day.

January 5, 2010 at 11:40 PM

CES: Steve Ballmer will announce a new tablet from Microsoft, NYT says

LAS VEGAS — The New York Times Bits blog reported tonight that Microsoft Chief Executive Steve Ballmer plans to announce a new version of a tablet PC in his keynote tomorrow evening here at the Consumer Electronics Show.

Citing unnamed sources, the blog item said Microsoft is partnering with Hewlett-Packard to make the item. Ballmer is scheduled to talk at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday. I have reached out to Microsoft to see whether they are commenting on the report but have not heard back.

Microsoft has made tablet PCs for several years, but the idea is gaining steam across the industry, with rumors circulating that Apple will show off its own tablet PC in March.

Tablet PCs are laptops with touch-enabled screens. Computer makers are also calling them “slates.” I’m waiting for someone to brand it a “chalkboard.”

Lenovo showed off its tablet, the IdeaPad U1, at a press event this evening. It works both as a slim clamshell laptop with a touch-enabled screen and the monitor detaches and can be used as a tablet PC. The IdeaPad runs on Windows 7, and will be available on June 1 for less than $1,000.

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