RIM BlackBerry PlayBook Tablet Spied at Gartner Conference

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RIM BlackBerry PlayBook Tablet Spied at Gartner Conference

by Nicholas Kolakowski

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Spied in the Wild

The PlayBook made its appearance—behind glass—at Research In Motions booth. No, the pretty on-screen picture didnt move or change. The 7-inch tablet relies on a proprietary operating system built on QNX technology.

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Enterprise Device

Unlike other tablet manufacturers, which are primarily aiming their wares at the consumer market, RIM is angling the 0.9-pound PlayBook as an enterprise device.

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Dual Cameras

The PlayBook features two embedded cameras: a 3-megapixel lens in front, paired with a 5-megapixel one in the rear. The rear camera—which is shown here—evidently sits at the top-center of the tablet.

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High Resolution

The PlayBooks 7-inch screen will feature 1,024 by 600 resolution, compared with the iPads 9.7-inch screen and 1,024 by 768 resolution.

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Admin Needed?

In RIMs booth at the Gartner conference, one of the two PlayBooks began to display this screen—it seemed like some sort of setup dashboard. The inability to actually touch the device, however, made it hard to tell.

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The PlayBook will reportedly offer a 3G connection via an existing BlackBerry service plan. The iPad offers an "a la carte" connectivity model, with customers able to activate their 3G connection on a monthly basis, while other tablets may require signing a two-year data plan with a provider.

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BlackBerry Enhancement

RIM co-CEO Mike Lazaridis has reportedly claimed that the PlayBook will "amplify" his companys BlackBerry smartphones. The tablet will sync information with a users BlackBerry.

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RIM has also played up its tablets ability to video conference, courtesy of those rear- and front-facing cameras. Some competing tablets will also offer that capability, while many pundits and analysts expect Apple to adopt it with the next version of the iPad.

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Multitasking and Flash

The PlayBook will reportedly support Adobe Flash and HTML5, multitasking and high-definition video.

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No Release Date or Price Yet

RIM has not offered a firm price point or release date for the PlayBook. Company representatives at the Gartner conference also stayed quiet about those details.

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