After months of rumors and speculation about a slate-like device, Apple had its say on Wednesday. This is our live coverage from the high-profile press event, which kicked off in San Francisco at 10 a.m. PST. This page contains our up-to-the-minute updates as the announcement was made. Click here for our summary of everything you need to know about the new tablet, dubbed the iPad.
You can also see a collection of videos from Steve Jobs' introduction of the iPad here. In addition, Tom Merritt, Molly Wood, and Rafe Needleman hosted a special edition of Buzz Out Loud. Click here for the show to hear their ongoing commentary throughout today's announcement.
9:53 a.m. PST: OK, we're all settled inside Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, where the event should get going in just under 10 minutes. I'm with CNET reviewer Donald Bell, who will be providing some occasional commentary today. The place is packed already, and Bob Dylan is on the speakers. The stage is a bit of a different setup than we've seen at these events before, with a comfortable-looking leather chair and table set up on the left.
10:01 a.m.: Lights are lowering, and music is getting turned down. Here we go.
10:01 a.m.: Steve Jobs takes the stage to a standing ovation.
10:02 a.m.: He says he wants to kick off 2010 by introducing a truly magical and revolutionary product today. But first a few updates to other products.
iPods are up first. Steve says the 250 millionth iPod was sold last week.
10:03 a.m.: Now he's talking about retail stores.
And another store, the App Store, is an "incredible phenomenon" he says. With 140,000 apps in the App Store, there have been 3 billion downloads over the past 18 months
10:04 a.m.: Finally, he shows an old photo of himself and Woz and says since they started the company in 1976, and now they have a company making $15.6 billion in revenue. "Apple is an over-$50 billion company now," he says.
10:05 a.m.: He is going to explain where the revenue comes from: iPods, iPhones, and Macs. "What's interesting," he says, is that iPods, iPhones, and Macs are mobile devices. Apple is a mobile device company. "That's what we do."
10:06 a.m.: Apple is the largest mobile devices company in the world now, by revenue, according to Jobs. He says this includes Sony, Samsung, and Nokia's mobile devices units.
10:06 a.m.: That's the end of the updates. Now to the main event.
He shows a photo of Moses holding a tablet. "I chuckled when I saw this."
10:07 a.m.: Quick history lesson: The 1991 PowerBook is on the screen now. It's the first modern laptop, he tells us.
He shows the 2007 original iPhone, too.
"All of us use laptops and smartphones now," he says. "The question has arisen lately, is there room for a third category of device in the middle?"
10:09 a.m.: In order to create a new category of devices, they have to be really good at doing some important things, he says. That includes Web browsing, e-mail, photos, watching video, listening to music, playing games, and reading e-books.
10:09 a.m.: Some people have thought that's a Netbook, he says. "The problem is Netbooks aren't better at anything," he says to loud laughter and applause.
"They're just cheap laptops. We think we have something better."
10:10 a.m.: iPad is the name.… Read more