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Thursday, January 06, 2011
RIM Announces 4G Playbook Tablet


Research in Motion's new tablet "Playbook" will launch in a 4G version this summer with Sprint Nextel.

RIM for the first time on Wednesday provided a hands-on demonstration of the PlayBook at CES 2011.

Announced last September, Playbook is a seven-inch touchscreen tablet that will go head-to-head with Apple's iPad when the Wi-Fi-only version ships, likely in March.

At CES, Research In Motion and Sprint announced plans to launch another BlackBerry PlayBook tablet model in the summer, featuring connectivity to Sprint 4G network. The BlackBerry 4G PlayBook will be the first BlackBerry PlayBook model to include wide area wireless connectivity, featuring Sprint 4G to give customers download speeds up to 10 times faster than 3G.

In addition to Wi-Fi support, the BlackBerry 4G PlayBook features a 1 GHz dual-core processor, 1 GB of RAM and the new BlackBerry Tablet OS. The portable tablet will support for Adobe Flash Player 10.1, Adobe Mobile AIR and HTML-5. The tablet also promises to offer advanced security features, out-of-the-box enterprise support and a robust development platform.

"Initial feedback about the BlackBerry PlayBook has been outstanding," said Mike Lazaridis, President and Co-CEO at Research In Motion. "Our strategic decision to invest in groundbreaking performance, web fidelity and an open web-based development environment is resonating extremely well with customers and developers."

The BlackBerry developer community has already begun developing and submitting applications for the BlackBerry PlayBook.

The company has previously said it would sell the PlayBook for "under $500" but has not yet provided a specific price tag. The iPad starts at $499.

BlackBerry PlayBook specifications

* 7" 1024x600 WSVGA LCD touch screen
* Less than a pound and less than one-half inch thick: 0.9 lbs (400g) and 5.1" x 7.6" x 0.4" (130mm x 194mm x 10mm)
* 1 GHz dual-core processor
* BlackBerry Tablet OS with support for symmetric multiprocessing
* MP3, AAC and WMA audio playback
* Support for 1080p HD video playback (H.264, MPEG4, WMV)
* HDMI out
* Dual HD cameras for video conferencing and video capture
* 1 GB RAM memory
* Up to 64 GB internal storage (16, 32 and 64 GB models)
* Wi-Fi (802.11 a/b/g/n) connectivity
* Bluetooth 2.1+EDR support


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