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Microsoft may launch tablets to rival the iPad at CES [Updated]

IpadMicrosoft could reveal several so-called "iPad killers" at Consumer Electronics Show next month.

The tablets are expected to be similar in size and shape to the iPad, though perhaps a bit thicker, with a slide-out keyboard, according to the New York Times, citing unnamed sources. The devices, to be unveiled at the Las Vegas show, will be powered by the Windows 7 operating system and made by Dell and Samsung, according to the report.

But catching up with iPad and Android OS-powered devices may be a tall order. The iPad is reportedly undergoing improvements that will make it even slimmer and currently tops Christmas wish lists. More than 300,000 were sold on its first day on the market.

And Microsoft is developing a bit of a reputation as a tease. At the last CES 11 months ago, Chief Executive Steve Ballmer presented the Windows-based HP Slate 500 -– which didn't actually debut until October to lukewarm sales.

Microsoft said it was looking into the report and could not comment immediately.

[Updated at 12:50 p.m.: The company has responded. But all it has to say is: "Unfortunately, Microsoft has nothing to share at this time."]

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-- Tiffany Hsu

Photo: Apple Inc. CEO Steve Jobs holds the new iPad. Credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

 
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