Apple has ordered 10-inch touchscreens from its iPhone screen supplier Wintek, according to a source in a Reuters story Wednesday. The news is the most recent string to be gathered in this Apple netbook yarn.
The dive into netbooks -- a surging market dominated by $300 simplified mini-laptops from outfits like Acer and Asus -- could be jarring for Apple and its stock.Netbooks are popular devices at a time when consumers are pinching pennies. The problem, however, as Dell (DELL - Get Report) and Hewlett-Packard (HPQ - Get Report) investors will tell you, is that the netbooks game is a race to the bottom from a pricing perspective. Apple might spy an opportunity to sell top-tier touchscreen tablet-style computers, but the fear is that the presumably big price tag won't be an easy fit in the netbook cheapening trend. As analysts have noted, Apple ultra-cool, luxury devices are not quite in tune with the steepening global recession and a flight to cheaper gadgets. Consider it from slightly blunter angle. Consumers face an interesting choice: Buy an Apple computer, or buy four netbooks for the same price. The economics aren't completely in Apple's favor, it seems.