RIM finally took the veils off their much-anticipated tablet yesterday. Called the Blackberry PlayBook, the new iPad competitor is geared towards both business and personal uses.
Unlike RIM’s smartphones, the slate isn’t running Blackberry OS at all. Instead, it uses QNX, an operating system from an outfit that the company bought last year. The platform has a tablet-optimized UI, handles multi-tasking and supports a whole host of technologies, including SMP, Open GL, WebKit, Adobe Flash 10.1, Adobe AIR, WebWorks and more. Apps written for WebWorks will run on both the tablet and smartphones with Blackberry OS 6.
Details of the Blackberry PlayBook include a 7-inch capacitive touchscreen display (1024 x 600 resolution), dual cameras (5.0-megapixel optics in the rear and 3.2-megapixel out front), 1GHz dual-core CPU, 1GB of RAM, WiFi, Bluetooth 2.1, an HDMI port (it can process 1080p video) and a USB slot. It’s slim at 0.4 inches and lightweight at 0.9 lbs. While unconfirmed, the tablet is said to be coming in two storage sizes – 16GB and 32GB.
RIM claims the tablet will support full multi-tasking, with apps running completely in the background, unlike the limited one allowed in iOS. It doesn’t have 3G, but can tether off the connection in your Blackberry smartphone. Additionally, it can grab data from the phone via Bluetooth for display on the bigger screen, including contacts and emails, with no need for syncing.
From the sound of it, RIM has something good going with the Blackberry PlayBook. It’s slated to come out early 2011, with no pricing details given.