Microsoft may be close to revealing a new tablet device if the machinations of the rumour mill are to be believed, with the Xbox manufacturer touted to unveil their new gadget as soon as June 18th.
According to a report from TheWrap, "[Microsoft] has scheduled a secretive event for Monday at 3:30 p.m. June 18 in Los Angeles, where it will make a "major" announcement whose nature has not been disclosed. Even the venue has not yet been announced.
"But an individual with knowledge of the company said that Microsoft would introduce a Microsoft-manufactured tablet at the event, marking a foray into a new hardware category that would put the company in direct competition with giant rival Apple."
It's a report supported by AllThingsD, who've noted they've been hearing similar rumours about the LA event, but who also warn that although taking a more direct approach to the tablet market could put pressure on Apple, it's also likely to alienate Microsoft's current partners - companies such as Dell, Lenovo, HP, and Acer - who've been manufacturing Windows 8/RT tablets already at Microsoft's own instruction.
Finally, where does SmartGlass fit into all of this - the initiative unveiled at E3 that offers interactive services across Windows-based devices and Xbox. [via GII]