Latest Apple Tablet Rumors: New York Times and iSlate Partnership?

Apple_TabletThe Apple tablet rumors had a bit of a dry spell this weekend—surprisingly we don’t have as much to report from the past few days—but we hope Monday has more gossip for us to gab about. Being in the news industry, we chide ourselves when hoping for gossip, but when it comes to Apple that’s the best we can do. The tight-lipped tech company keeps its latest devices and innovations under-wraps, producing and promoting very few products within a year’s time. Reporting on actual “Apple news” is kind of like seeing a solar eclipse—you’re lucky if it happens twice a year—so the tech world is left to fend for themselves in the Apple rumor game, hoping that some piece of gritty gossip makes its way over the wire.

What is the rumor today, you ask: Well it appears the New York Times may be entwined in an exclusive content deal with Apple’s new tablet PC device. CNET reported today that the newspaper will be announcing that it will institute a metered pay plan, allowing readers only a select amount of free content. CNET cites a report in New York magazine as the source for this newsworthy rumor. Apple has apparently been shopping around for media companies and content providers for its new tablet device, which will most likely be revealed at Apple’s scheduled press conference in San Francisco on January 27th.

As readers stray away from print and use online sources for news and media, the New York Times was compelled to settle on a metered system to hopefully resolve its financial woes and keep a faithful readership. The rumored partnership with Apple for Times content on the new tablet device could dovetail with the paid strategy.

And incased you missed it, here’s what happened last week in the Apple tablet rumor kingdom:

January 11, 2010: Orange executive Stéphane Richard confirmed in an interview that there was an Apple tablet, it has a webcam and it will be announced at the press conference on January 27th.

January 12, 2010: An anonymous report claims Apple has bought out every 10-inch OLED and LCD display in Asia for its new tablet PC. Also, Orange exec Richard, pretends he blacked out in his interview and claims everything he said the day before about the Apple tablet was not true—“Webcam? Ce que webcam?”

January 13, 2010: Boy Genius Report gets some spec leakage from its top secret Apple insider who claims the new tablet is basically “an iPhone on steroids” that is powered by some “incredibly fast ARM CPU.”

January 15, 2010: Apple lawyer tells Valleywag blog to stop its “Apple Tablet Scavenger Hunt,” and, given Apple’s defensive stance, made us believe in the new iSlate tablet a little more. Valleywag said no and is still offering thousands of dollars in reward money for pictures, videos, and physical proof of the tablet.