Hot on the heels of New York Times editor Bill Keller making reference to an Apple publishing device he called a “slate”, comes a report out of the Sydney Morning Herald which states that Apple has been shopping around its tablet device to a number of Australian media companies to see if they’re interested in getting their content onto it. In doing so, Apple supplied Australian media companies with the specs of the rumored device, and though no one was willing to go on-the-record and discuss any specifics, the Herald observes:
The tablet is tipped to be a larger version of the iPhone. It is small enough to carry in a handbag but too big to fit in a pocket. It will have a touch screen and be targeted at users who mainly want to surf the web, read books and newspapers or watch movies.
I wonder if Apple is approaching overseas companies with its tablet idea because it wants to make the device as global as possible, or if it’s somehow rooted in recent reports which suggest that traditional publishers here in the U.S. are somewhat wary of ceding control of their content to Apple – and want to avoid the situation that befell record labels in the mid-2000’s where Apple’s control over the iPod and iTunes gave them a powerful negotiating position.