Microsoft's Top-Secret Tablet, Courier

We've all been going nuts with anticipation over the mythical Apple tablet that is expected to appear next year. We have wondered about its design, and applications, and OS, and which carriers it will run on. The one question that nobody has dared to ask is, "What if someone else delivers and even cooler tablet?" Perish the thought, right?

If the information in the exclusive feature at Gizmodo is any indication, we might just have to consider the notion that the tablet we'll all want to carry around in a year or two may come from Microsoft of all places. Courier, as it's called, is a dual-screen "booklet" design that looks in its concept drawings like something Apple could have easily cooked up. It's got two multitouch screens for use with fingers or styli, and a user interface that is clearly divorced from Windows.

The project is supposedly headed by J. Allard, who made his name spearheading the user experience and technical work on Xbox 360 and Zune (two other products from Microsoft that divorce themselves from Windows' look and feel). Check out the UI demo video and other device renders at Gizmodo, and tell us you don't want one of these things. It's like a tablet PC meets Surface meets Zune HD. I wonder how well it plays games?

Gizmodo says it will have much more on Courier in the following days. And, Microsoft? Please don't screw this up.

Follow Jason Cross on twitter or visit his blog.

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