RIM Announce PlayBook – The BlackBerry iPad Rival

playbooknavigator The BlackBerry Developer Conference is on, and Research In Motion CEO Mike Lazardis has just announced a new BlackBerry tablet- to be called the Playbook.

The tablet will run a new OS called unimaginatively the BlackBerry Tablet OS, which offers full OpenGL support as well as HTML5, and most crucially as a point-of-difference over the iPad, Flash support via Flash 10.1.

RIM’s founder Dan Dodge, said that the PlayBook would be “an incredible gaming platform for publishers and the players”  and described it as “the first professional tablet”

Interface

The BlackBerry Tablet OS interface seems to be a combination of webOS and the BlackBerry OS and includes the ability to draw data from a BlackBerry phone handset via Bluetooth for display on the PlayBook.  The RIM press release explains that users will be able to ” “use their tablet and smartphone interchangeably without worrying about syncing or duplicating data.”

Tech Specs

The PlayBook will feature a 7”, 1024 x 600, capacitive multitouch  display, a dual core 1GHZ CPU (enabling the device to be what RIM claim is the “fastest tablet ever”), 1GB of RAM and also front and rear cameras (3 megapixel front-facing, 5 megapixel rear) with video conferencing.  The PlayBook is capable of 1080p HD Video, weighs a lightweight 400g and measures 7.6” x  5.12 x 0.4”.  It will come with a range of connection options including HDMI, microUSB, 802.11a/b/g/n WiFi and Bluetooth 2.1.

No firm launch dates or pricing were announced but expect the PlayBook in “early 2011”.  More photos and a preview video below.

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