"Apple's long-trailed tablet computer had better be good.
Semiconductor maker Freescale will this week announce the outline
of a cheap rival device it hopes will be adopted by computer makers
to boost its in-house chip technology.
"The concept is not something people will be able to buy
immediately, but will be shown in the form of a reference design, a
sort of blueprint for other companies to adopt as they see fit. But
it appears to have been thought through and there is plenty in it
to worry Apple as it ponders marketing for its own tablet system,
rumoured to cost as much as $1,000 a pop.
"Freescale's take on the 'smartbook' - an idea halfway between a
netbook laptop and a smartphone - will sport a 7 inch screen and be
built around the 1GHz ARM-based i.MX515 microprocessor."