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Microsoft tablet? Computing giant 'to announce iPad rival'

There are widespread reports that a pioneering Windows tablet will be unveiled on Monday.

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer launches the firm's Windows Phone 7 in 2010
Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer launches the firm's Windows Phone 7 in 2010
Image: Manu Fernandez/AP/Press Association Images

MICROSOFT IS EXPECTED to announce its own tablet computer to rival Apple’s iPad in two days’ time.

The company has invited journalists to a “major” announcement in Los Angeles on Monday. Sources told the New York Times that the software giant would use the occasion to unveil its own tablet device running a version of Windows.

Technology blogs The Wrap and AllThingsD also said they had confidential information that the announcement would concern a Windows tablet.

The move would mark a rare foray for Microsoft into the world of hardware production. The company’s traditional model has been to produce software and operating systems, and leave the manufacturing of computers to third-party firms.

However, Microsoft has seen its market share eroded by Apple in recent years – a trend that has been accelerated by the move away from desktop and laptop PCs and towards mobile devices.

Apple’s model of producing both hardware and software for its devices allows it to control users’ experience in a way that has not been possible for PC manufacturers.

The company has declined to confirm the reports.

Read: Long-haul budget airline ‘to lower fares by using iPads’>

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Michael Freeman

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