RIM confirmed rumors of a tablet by introducing the BlackBerry PlayBook, a powerful 7-inch device that will offer a dual-core 1GHz processor, full HTML 5 browser, Flash 10.1 with video acceleration, 1 GB of RAM, 1080p playback with HDMI output and two HD cameras, all built atop the QNX operating system.


RIM confirmed rumors of a tablet by introducing the BlackBerry PlayBook, a powerful 7-inch device that will offer a dual-core 1GHz processor, full HTML 5 browser, Flash 10.1 with video acceleration, 1 GB of RAM, 1080p playback with HDMI output and two HD cameras, all built atop the QNX operating system.

The PlayBook connects to all 250,000 BlackBerry Enterprise Servers, offering solid security and management and cementing its appeal with enterprise users. That’s how RIM is framing the PlayBook, first as an “enterprise-ready professional tablet.” But with a full WebKit browser, multitasking and multimedia support, it should appeal to consumers as well.

In April, RIM bought QNX, which had been working on the PlayBook operating system for at least a year. The QNX operating system has been deployed in cars, medical devices, networking gear from Cisco and other embedded machines.

Dan Dodge, CEO of QNX, said the operating system is advanced and modern, created with multiprocessing and security in mind. He said all of the learning QNX gained from other applications of the OS went into the PlayBook OS.

The platform will support a Java virtual machine to apparently support many of the existing BlackBerry apps. That addresses some of the questions about dividing developers between two platforms. Developers will also be able to create apps using WebWorks, RIM’s new platform for developing web apps and packaging them for BlackBerry App World. And they’ll be able to build Adobe Air apps as well 3-D applications that take advantage of the PlayBook’s support for Open GL.

Users will be able to tether the PlayBook with a BlackBerry handset via Bluetooth. RIM plans to offer 3G and 4G versions of the PlayBook in the future.

There’s no word on the pricing of the tablet. But it’s headed for release in early 2011.

Here’s a list of complete specs:

Key features and specifications of the BlackBerry PlayBook include:

  • 7″ LCD, 1024 x 600, WSVGA, capacitive touch screen with full multi-touch and gesture support
  • BlackBerry Tablet OS with support for symmetric multiprocessing
  • 1 GHz dual-core processor
  • 1 GB RAM
  • Dual HD cameras (3 MP front facing, 5 MP rear facing), supports 1080p HD video recording
  • Video playback: 1080p HD Video, H.264, MPEG, DivX, WMV
  • Audio playback: MP3, AAC, WMA
  • HDMI video output
  • Wi-Fi – 802.11 a/b/g/n
  • Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR
  • Connectors: microHDMI, microUSB, charging contacts
  • Open, flexible application platform with support for WebKit/HTML-5, Adobe Flash Player 10.1, Adobe Mobile AIR, Adobe Reader, POSIX, OpenGL, Java
  • Ultra thin and portable:
    • Measures 5.1″x7.6″x0.4″ (130mm x 193mm x 10mm)
    • Weighs less than a pound (approximately 0.9 lb or 400g)
  • Additional features and specifications of the BlackBerry PlayBook will be shared on or before the date this product is launched in retail outlets.
  • RIM intends to also offer 3G and 4G models in the future.

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  1. Hopefully some thing to counter apples arrogance

  2. Barry O’Toole Monday, September 27, 2010

    If they are targeting businesses and corporations, why name it Playbook?

  3. How well will it browse the web? How will they catch up on the app side?

    They’ll get some business users but this wont compete with Android and Apple.

  4. This will be a game changer!

    1. Definetly makes the Galaxy Tab look obsolete. Should give Steve Jobs something to actually worry about.

  5. Consider this a desperate bid to enter the luring tablet market. I’m afraid this fragment this market even further. Would interesting to see how willing the developer ecosystem to develop enticing app for this.

  6. looks nice. I kinda want one.

  7. This is huge if it integrates into BES services! Companies will be more willing to take the leap if a management system is already in place. QNX is a solid real time OS. Keeping java around allows developers to transition to the new platform. This is a good move by RIM.

  8. Finally!!!… I’ve gotten used to the Tablet lifestyle with my iPad; but willing to trade it with a tablet that has Flash!!

    The Internet is missing without it. Love it or hate it…. Flash is everywhere!!

    1. Really? I genuinely haven’t noticed the lack of flash on my ipad and it stay’s by my side pretty much all the time. I haven’t come across any video’s that won’t play now, but heh that might just be my browsing habits ?

    2. I have an IPAD/Iphone 3Gs and to me the Internet fills incomplete, I use some different web sites that requires flash, we have in our church an Internet TV channel (just as an example), that is not Iphone/Ipad compatible (Livestream) is trying to move but it seems is not a quick easy move and neither back compatible with all content already published, So I really like the PlayBook presentation and of course will need to see the earlier reviews to confirm it works as shown in the release video.

  9. This looks more capable than I would have thought. Thanks for providing the specs, Ryan.

  10. BlackBerry PlayBook Tablet Targets Business Users : Tech News « | Scott Ashjian News Monday, September 27, 2010

    [...] more here: BlackBerry PlayBook Tablet Targets Business Users : Tech News « Comments [...]

  11. so how many OS or versions will i need to dev for with RIM again now?


  12. BlackBerry PlayBook Gets Two E-Reader Apps: Mobile « Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    [...] Research in Motion unveiled its BlackBerry tablet yesterday, and indicated it is aimed at the enterprise professional. Workers need leisure time too, [...]

  13. Even Without Tablets, Android Ad Impressions Up 996%: Tech News « Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    [...] foolish to ignore the opportunity provided by larger display devices such as the iPad. Indeed, with yesterday’s introduction of the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet, I anticipate Research In Motion to appear higher on future reports from Millenial after the device [...]

  14. Fresno DUI Attorney Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    Wow. Amazing looking OS

  15. BlackBerry Tablet OS is an Invitation to Developers: Tech News « Tuesday, September 28, 2010

    [...] There’s a reason why RIM unveiled its BlackBerry PlayBook tablet at a developer event. It’s because the device is the company’s best shot at greatly [...]

  16. BlackBerry PlayBook: iPad Rival or Rookie Mistake?: Apple « Tuesday, September 28, 2010

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  17. Mobile Operators’ Strategies for Connected Devices: Tech News « Tuesday, September 28, 2010

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  18. I agreee with Harsh, Apple is getting a little arrogant and it would be nice to see some quality competition :)

  19. Great move by BlackBerry.

    Described as a modern OS, I assume that QNX will be able to Copy & Paste, unlike some of the hapless competition.

  20. RIM Beats Apple to the Punch With App Purchases on Web: Tech News « Friday, October 22, 2010

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  21. Adobe Targets Non-Apple Devices for AIR 2.5 Apps: Tech News « Monday, October 25, 2010

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  22. Report: iPad Is an Enterprise IT Triple-Threat: Apple « Wednesday, October 27, 2010

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  23. Why the iPad’s 95.5% Market Share Means Nothing, Yet: Apple « Tuesday, November 2, 2010

    [...] be the only one elbowing for room in the tablet market, either. BlackBerry is set to release the PlayBook, which will be popular among enterprise customers. Hewlett-Packard, Microsoft and ViewSonic look [...]

  24. Windows Phone 7 Attracts Interest As Development Platform: Tech News « Thursday, November 4, 2010

    [...] RIM’s prospects though that could change next year with more BlackBerry OS 6 devices and the PlayBook tablet. Palm appears to have an even tougher road ahead. Only 5 percent of publishers currently work on [...]

  25. Why Apple Should Consider a Seven-inch iPad: Mobile « Saturday, November 6, 2010

    [...] Research In Motion, Samsung and Viewsonic are all hoping to cash in on the tablet computer market with seven-inch devices. We’re sure to see more similarly sized gadgets int he next several months as a crush of new models come to market. Apple, in the past, has eschewed the idea of a smaller-sized iPad, but as I discuss in detail over at GigaOM Pro (subscription required), there are some compelling reasons for Apple to consider such a device. [...]

  26. SAP’s CIO Dishes on iPads and Green IT: Cloud « Tuesday, November 16, 2010

    [...] Bussman specifically noted efforts to integrate the Samsung Galaxy smartphone, and he expects BlackBerry Playbook support by [...]

  27. Dear BlackBerry, I Want a Real PlayBook, Not Videos: Tech News « Tuesday, November 16, 2010

    [...] at its developer day in San Francisco, the company wouldn’t even let anyone touch the device. It has been nearly six weeks since RIM publicly announced the tablet. There are still no hands-on impressions from anyone who [...]

  28. RIM Picks up TAT to Push PlayBook Design: Tech News « Thursday, December 2, 2010

    [...] in Motion still has a few months before it launches PlayBook, its entry in the hot tablet market, and the company showed it’s prepared to compete by [...]

  29. RIM Accepting Apps for the PlayBook; Giving Tablets Away: Mobile « Tuesday, December 7, 2010

    [...] PlayBook is RIM’s 7-inch tablet due for release in early 2011, and incorporates solid hardware components in addition to the new QNX OS. It’s expected RIM will play to its strength and target the [...]

  30. RIM Looks to Distant Shores, Tablets For Growth: Tech News « Friday, December 17, 2010

    [...] redefines what a tablet should do.” Based on that comment and prior PlayBook demonstrations, RIM’s tablet is poised as an enterprise solution first, and consumer tablet [...]

  31. Six Things to Expect at the 2011 Consumer Electronics Show: Tech News and Analysis « Monday, January 3, 2011

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  32. HP Channels Apple for WebOS Device Launch: Tech News and Analysis « Tuesday, January 4, 2011

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  33. BlackBerry 4G PlayBook Coming to Sprint’s WiMAX Network: Mobile Technology News « Wednesday, January 5, 2011

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