Google and Apple in iPad grapple

Google boss Eric Shmidt has apparently let slip that his company is actually developing a tablet device to take on the iPad.

The company published conceptual renderings of a tablet device some time ago but there are now rumblings on the rumour mill about actual hardware being developed.

According to the New York Times, the search engine giant's CEO was overheard at a party talking about the new device which will drive another wedge between the two increasingly competitive outfits.

Google is well placed to take on the Cupertino company having already taken the iPhone to task with the Nexus One app phone and its increasingly popular Android operating system.

And unlike other wannabees like Dell, Archos and HP, Google has a certain amount of expertise when it comes to distributing mobile software with its Android Marketplace.

Google will almost certainly address some of the iPad's apparent shortcomings and we fully expect the device to be practically identical in physical size, come equipped with at least one camera, have several USB ports, and be Flash compliant.