Will the Apple tablet finally, really be unveiled? We're at the Yerba Buena Center in San Francisco (see above) patiently waiting to get inside and get this thing underway! Keep reading after the break for the minute by minute coverage!
11:33AM "We've always tried to be at the intersection of technology and liberal arts -- we want to make the best tech, but have them be intuitive. It's the combination of these two things that have let us make the iPad."
11:32AM "This is a magical device, at a breakthrough price."
11:31AM "We think we've got the goods. We think we've done it. Another thing we're excited about is that there's already 75m people who know how to use this because of how many iPhones and iPod touches we've shipped."
11:30AM "Do we have what it takes to establish a third category of products?"
11:30AM Steve is back!
11:29AM Okay, finally some casual typing shown! On the lap folks.
11:27AM "The iPad is the most advanced piece of tech that I've ever worked on at Apple."
11:26AM No phone calls from what we can tell.
11:26AM So to recap. No multitasking. No word on notifications.
11:22AM Jonny Ive talking about magical devices. "That's exactly what the iPad is." Magical? Really? Doesn't seem that magical to us!
11:22AM "Now we made a video we're going to put on the web... let's run it here."
11:22AM Third... a case.
11:21AM "We've got some really great accessories. First one is a dock. You know the slideshow I showed you? When it's in the dock you have a great picture frame. We have another dock that's interesting... the keyboard dock." What!?
11:20AM "We will be shipping these in 60 days. 3G models will ship in 90 days."
11:20AM "So $499 for 16GB of iPad. That's our base model. 32GB is $599, 64GB is $799. 3G models cost an extra $130. $629, 729, and 829 with 3G."
11:18AM "If you listen to the pundits, we're going to price it under $1000, which is code for $999. When we set out to develop this, we had ambitious tech goals, but we had aggressive price goals."
11:17AM "What should we price it at?"
11:17AM "And the new iBooks application. You can carry literally thousands of books around. And the iWork suite of apps with the best UI we've ever seen for something like this."
11:17AM "WiFI plus 3G if you want it. So iPad. It's phenomenal. Email is fantastic, best device for photos, great for music, great for video. It runs almost all of the 140k apps on the app store, as well as a whole new generation of apps."
11:16AM "So we have a breakthrough deal in the US. We hope to have our international deals in the June / July timeframe. However, all of the iPad 3G models are unlocked, and they use the new GSM microSIMs."
11:15AM "So how do you turn this on and manage it? You can activate this right on the iPad. And there's no contract -- it's prepaid."
11:14AM "We have a breakthrough deal with AT&T." Wow. Some serious sharp intakes of breath here.
11:14AM "We have an unlimited plan for just $29.99 a month."
11:14AM "Now what does it cost for the data plans? Well in the US carriers charge about $60 a month. We have a real breakthrough. Two awesome plans for iPad owners. The first one gives you 250MB of data a month for $14.99."
11:13AM "Now I'd like to talk about wireless networking. Every iPad has WiFi... but we're also going to have models with 3G."
11:12AM "Isn't it great?" Some slight hesitation. "A few other things. I'd like to talk for a minute about iTunes. The iPad syncs over USB just like an iPhone or iPod."
11:11AM "That's iWork on the iPad." And Steve is... back!
11:11AM And the iWork demo is done. "So what are we going to charge for applications like this? We're gong to charge just $9.99 each." He means $10 for Pages, $10 for Keynote... etc.
11:10AM It looks as though these new dropdowns menus are a major part of the iPad OS. Will be interesting to see how this translates to the iPhone and iPod touch. Is there going to be room? Or will they be left out entirely?
11:09AM Interesting. A data entry keyboard just for entering info into a spreadsheet. There are a number of different keyboard for specific tasks, also a date and time keyboard.
11:06AM New tool: Page Navigator. It's a bit like the magnification loop and lets you jump through pages. Automatic image outlines -- just drag your image and text reformats.
11:05AM "Like Keynote I see a gallery of documents."
11:05AM Automatic transition animations. Very nice. "So that's a preview. Now let's go to Pages."
11:03AM We'll say this -- iWork looks really robust. Far more than an iPhone app. Lots of options, lots of ways to work with your data.
11:02AM They've really redone this interface. We don't know about you, but using iWork wasn't one of our fantasies when we thought about what an Apple tablet would be like. This is nice... but it's iWork.
11:00AM Phil is showing off spreadsheets "It's cool and easy to use."
11:00AM Phil is out. "Good morning everyone. iWork is a suite of apps that millions of customers love."
10:59AM "Could the tablet handle that? You betcha. But they required a new UI -- here's Phil Schiller to tell you about it."
10:58AM "Now, something very exciting... iWork. A little over a year ago I asked the head of our team about creating iWork for the iPad. The reaction was... 'ahhh they require a lot of horsepower'"
10:57AM "So iBooks again, a great reader, a great online bookstore. All in one really great app. We use the ePub format. We're very excited about this."
10:57AM "You can change the font... whatever you want. And that is iBooks."
10:56AM The store is very similar to iTunes. Same modal pop-overs. Pricing doesn't look too bad. The book page display is nice. You can turn pages slowly -- really slick looking page animation.
10:55AM Demo time. Steve is showing it off.
10:54AM Five big partners... Penguin, Macmillion, Simon & Shuster... and more.
10:54AM "It has a bookshelf. In addition there's a button which is the store -- we've created the new iBook Store. You can download right onto your iPad."
10:53AM "Isn't that awesome? These guys only had two weeks. So we've seen some really great apps. Let me show you another... one of our apps. That's an ebook reader. Now Amazon has done a great job of pioneering this... we're going to stand on their shoulders for this. Our new app is called iBooks."
10:52AM Scott: "While we wait for those apps to come out, we can all run our existing apps... and that is the app story for the iPad." And Steve is back.
10:51AM Nice, live video within the app. Full screen too.
10:50AM Chad Evans from MLB.com -- "We were excited to build something for the iPad. We had to create a whole new experience for this display."
10:49AM Finally, MLB.com...
10:49AM And that's it for EA. Really?
10:49AM A handful of new touch controls. Graphics look smooth, fairly fast.
10:48AM Need for Speed Shift on screen. Looks pretty good. "Building for the iPad is a little different -- it's kind of like holding an HD display up to your face. It's really cool."
10:47AM Travis Boatman from EA is up. "When Apple invited us to come on site, we couldn't have been more excited. But we wanted to check out this device's performance as gamers."
10:46AM "Next up, EA." Of course!
10:46AM Scott is... back.
10:46AM This is very slick -- probably the most impressive demo yet. A very sophisticated use of the screen real estate. Brushes for the iPad looks like you can go pretty deep. Available at product launch.
10:45AM "Today I'd like to show you how brushes looks on the iPad." This is nice. Context menus for brush and color options. We're loving these new pop-over menus. No more diving!
10:44AM "Next is Brushes. It's an extremely popular app." Steve Sprang from Brushes is up.
10:43AM And Scott is back! That was brief.
10:43AM "This is just the beginning." Big cheers.
10:42AM Wow, nice. Embedded video inside of articles that can be played.
10:42AM "We think we've captured the essence of reading the newspaper. A superior experience in a native application." Wow, the layout is just like a standard paper, and again we've got those dropdown context menus. You can resize text with a pinch.
10:41AM "So Steve showed you the Times website, it's beautiful. Why did we come out here to develop a new app for the iPad? Our iPhone app has been downloaded 3m times. We wanted to create something special for the iPad."
10:40AM "To tell you about their plans for the iPad -- Martin Nisenholtz."
10:40AM "The iPad version of Nova ships later this year..." Interesting. Scott is back. "Next up, the New York Times."
10:39AM Showing off their FPS Nova. "I can slide the d-pad on the screen..." You can set up your own controls. New gestures for interacting with games. This isn't anything breathtaking just yet -- fairly standard graphics (though nice), nothing new in terms of interaction.
10:37AM "We're exciting about possibilities on this. So we invited some developers two weeks ago to see what they could create. We want to show you what they came up with. First, Gameloft." Mark Hickey from Gameloft is up.
10:36AM "We're going to feature iPad apps front and center for you."
10:36AM "We think it's going to be another gold rush for devs. And of course every iPad comes with the app store on it."
10:36AM "We rewrote all of our apps for this display. the iPhone SDK supports development for this now... and we're releasing it today."
10:35AM "So all of the iPhone apps will run on this. In fact when you buy it, download all the apps you have right onto the iPad. Now if the developer spends some time modifying their app, they can take full advantage of this display."
10:34AM Games look amazing. He's playing an OpenGLS title right now and it looks super smooth.
10:34AM So far no word on multitasking, but we haven't seen it. Jumps into and out of apps, nothing running concurrently.
10:33AM Gaming obviously will handle this better, but a text heavy app looks lonely or weirdly huge.
10:33AM "Let's start with Facebook. It just works." He's showing off the non-pixel doubled version, a small app in the middle of the screen. It's kind of silly looking. A lone app in the center of a black screen. The scaled up app looks silly as well, especially in Facebook.
10:32AM "We can also pixel double and run the apps full screen."
10:31AM Can run all iPhone apps unmodified out of the box.
10:31AM "Morning. The app store has been a huge success. Already our customers have downloaded 3b apps."
10:31AM "Now, let's go back to software. We've seen some great built in apps. Let's talk about third party. Let's talk about the app store." Scott Forstall is out!
10:30AM "What is the battery life like? We've been able to achieve 10 hours of battery life. I can take a flight from San Francisco to Tokyo and watch video the whole time. And it has over a month of standby time."
10:29AM Available in 16GB, 32, 64...
10:29AM "It's powered by our own silicon. The 1GHz Apple A4 chip. It screams."
10:28AM Full capacitive multitouch
10:28AM "Let's go back to the hardware." .5 inches thin, 1.5 pounds -- 9.7 inch IPS display
10:27AM Big cheers. "Watching it is nothing like getting it in your hands."
10:27AM "So that is video on the iPad. It gives you an overview of what the iPad can do."
10:26AM Now we're watching a clip of Star Trek. Looks great.
10:25AM "It just all works. And of course videos... we've got movies, TV shows, music videos."
10:25AM "Let's go to YouTube. I know this clip is in HD. I can go full screen."
10:24AM Steve is in Maps now. Zooming looks super fast -- no idea what this chip is, but it has no trouble handling pretty graphically intense stuff. Everything looks polished -- zero hiccup. "Now here's street view..." Wow. Big applause for that. "Now let me show you video."
10:23AM Now he's showing off calendar. Some new looks here.
10:22AM "Let me show you a few other things. The iTunes store is built right in. I can sample music, buy songs." The interface has modals that pop over what you're viewing to show you song / album info.
10:22AM Steve is playing more Dylan!
10:21AM Wow, iTunes interface is really nice, very expansive.
10:21AM This is the ultimate tease. We've got a sneaking suspicion there's a lot more to come.
10:21AM "You get the idea." Applause.
10:20AM Now we're watching a photo slideshow... just like iPhoto, cute music and all.
10:20AM Places in the photo app, that is.
10:20AM Now Steve is flipping through photos. Places is up now -- Google Maps in effect!
10:19AM "If I'm on a Mac, I can get events, places, and faces from iPhoto here."
10:18AM "Next, photos... this is what photos looks like. I can look at everything as a list of photos. I can tap on it..." Flicks and gestures just like the iPhone.
10:18AM "Now if I want to send a message, I hit compose -- up pops this gorgeous keyboard." Steve is typing, it looks very responsive.
10:17AM Wow, nice email display -- message list in a column on the left, full message on the right.
10:17AM "So that's browsing the web. Let's go to email." Again, menus pop down from the top.
10:16AM We're basically just watching Steve casually browse. This is odd.
10:16AM Now Steve is on Fandango... Now National Geographic. Switching to landscape. If you're an iPhone owner this will seem very familiar.
10:15AM "Let's go to Time magazine... see what's up there."
10:15AM No flash here... the missing plugin icon is on screen.
10:14AM It's essentially a huge Mobile Safari -- looks really really slick.
10:14AM Wow, super smooth scrolling.
10:14AM Slide to unlock screen just like the iPhone. "This is the lock screen -- icons fly in. Let's go right to the web..." Apple.com -- Bookmarks drop down from a bunch of contextual menus up top.
10:13AM "And it's awesome to watch movies and TVs... let's take a look at the device." Demo time!
10:13AM "We have the iTunes store built right in. YouTube, and YouTube in HD."
10:12AM The leak was real! Same maps application!
10:12AM "Album, photos... you can look at all of them, flick through them, it's a wonderful way to share. Calendar... months..." The interface really does look like an exploded iPhone.
10:12AM "Phenomenal for mail." Wow, new drop downs in the mail interface... and a large onscreen QWERTY!
10:11AM "Way better than a laptop, way better then a phone. You can turn it any way you want. To see the whole page is phenomenal."
10:11AM "So, gonna give you a little overview. It's very thin -- you can change the homescreen to whatever you want. What this device does is extraordinary. You can browse the web with it. It's the best web experience you've ever had."
10:10AM "We think we've got something that is better. And we call it the iPad."
10:09AM "Now some people thought that was a netbook -- the problem is that netbooks aren't better than anything!" Big cheers! Ha!
10:09AM "If there's gonna be a third category, it has to be better at these tasks -- otherwise it has no reason for being."
10:09AM "What kind of tasks? Browsing the web. Doing email. Enjoying and sharing pics. Watching videos. Enjoying music. Playing games. Reading ebooks."
10:08AM "SO all of us use laptops and smartphones... the question has arisen; is there room for something in the middle. We've wondered for years as well -- in order to create that category, they have to be far better at doing some key tasks... better than the laptop, better than the smartphone."
10:07AM "Let's go back to 1991, when we first shipped our Powerbooks. The first with a TFT screen, the first with palm rests, and had an integrated pointing device. Just a few years ago in 2007 we reinvented the phone... and a few years later we got the iPhone 3GS."
10:07AM "So let's get to the main event."
10:06AM "So those are the updates that we have today."
10:06AM "And by revenue... it's even bigger than Nokia."
10:06AM "Now where do we get this revenue? iPods, iPhones, and Macs. What's interesting is that iPods are mobile devices, the iPhone is, and most of our computers. We're a mobile company. That's what we do. How do we stack up against all the other companies that sell mobile devices? We're the largest mobile device company in the world. Larger than Sony, bigger than Samsung...."
10:05AM "Lastly - we started Apple in 1976 - 34 years later we just ended our holiday quarter with 50.6b dollars of revenue..." He showed a pic of him and Woz!
10:04AM "Next update - the app store. We have over 140k apps, and a few weeks ago we announced a user downloaded 3b apps."
10:03AM Now Steve is talking about the new Apple store in NYC. "Here it is on opening day. It's so wonderful to put these stores in the neighborhoods with our customers."
10:03AM "But first I have a few updates. A few weeks ago we sold our 250mth iPod. The second update is about our stores - we now have 284. It's amazing. Last quarter we had 50m visitors."
10:02AM "We want to kick of 2010 by introducing a magical and revolutionary product today... but first I have a few updates."
10:01AM Steve is soaking it in. "Good morning and thank you all for coming."
10:01AM And Steve is out! Huge applause... and a standing ovation from some audience members.
10:00AM The lights are going down... here we go!
10:00AM Verizon and Sprint 3G cards are your good, good buddies at an Apple event.
9:56AM "Please silence your phones... our program will begin shortly." Oooh.
9:55AM Sitting next Jim Dalrymple from The Loop... who's currently dealing with the aforementioned WiFi issues.
9:54AM Everyone is really all smiles here. Sure, the WiFi just went out, but generally everyone seems to be quite excited. Makes sense, gadgets and money will be flowing like sweet summer wine when this thing is all over. Right?
9:51AM The electric version of 'Baby Let Me Follow You Down' - in case you were wondering.
9:50AM So, more Dylan. We swear, if Bob Dylan shows up at this event, we're going to seriously freak out. In a good way.
9:43AM The setup on stage is really interesting. There's a chair with a table next to it... very unusual for an Apple event.
9:42AM Okay! We're in our seats and there's some Dylan playing on the sound system!
9:11AM Overall the mood is really jovial right now. It's basically a party in the U.S.A.
9:09AM We're in line waiting to get inside. People are seriously crowding. Let's hope we don't get trampled!