Kara Swisher

Recent Posts by Kara Swisher

Microsoft's Ballmer Will Not Be Showing "Courier" Slate PC at CES Opening Tonight

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As much as BoomTown likes a good computer tablet faceoff, sources with knowledge of the situation said that Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer will not be whipping out the secret “Courier” slate PC, which the company has been noodling on, in his keynote speech opening the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas tonight. Instead, he will be showing off a new Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) slate that runs Microsoft (MSFT) software.

Last night, the New York Times reported that the software giant would do so in a blog post titled: “Microsoft and H.P. to Reveal Slate PC Ahead of Apple.”

Apple (AAPL) will be launching its much heralded slate at an event in San Francisco Jan. 27, as All Things Digital has previously reported.

The Apple device is garnering the expected flood of hype, of course. So don’t expect Ballmer to pointlessly go against the tide of this particular tsunami, thereby painting its slate efforts as also-ran.

Instead, his speech will more likely focus on the company’s new Windows 7 operating system, cloud computing, portable and mobile devices and Microsoft’s “software plus services” motto.

While Ballmer might talk about a range of products related to Microsoft, and there will be multiform hardware shown, including multitouch, tablet-type devices, there will be no grand showing of the one called the Courier, which Microsoft is reportedly working on with HP.

Hence the possible confusion over the PC slate.

Now please go back to gushing over the Apple iSlate ad nauseum!


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Another gadget you don’t really need. Will not work once you get it home. New model out in 4 weeks. Battery life is too short to be of any use.

— From the fact sheet for a fake product entitled Useless Plasticbox 1.2 (an actual empty plastic box) placed in L.A.-area Best Buy stores by an artist called Plastic Jesus