During a keynote presentation at RIM’s development conference in San Francisco, the much buzzed about BlackPad was announced, but its real name is Playbook!

I gotta give RIM a high-five for giving their tablet computer a sexy name (in addition, it’s a pretty sexy devise). I prefer the name the over say an iPad. But will this new devise get RIM back into the game? The company needed to captivate the world after they failed to woo the masses with the recent launch of the Blackberry Torch. So far, so good, as the tablet is getting strong reviews. RIM are appealing to a wider demographic ranging from the business types to the app-obsessed teen.

The Playbook is a 7-inch touchscreen (take that Samsung Galaxy Tab) and will run on QNX, an operating system developed by QNX Software Systems (it’s a company that RIM acquired recently). Ironically, the tablet doesn’t run on the Blackberry OS 6. It has Wi-Fi and Bluetooth but needs to link/teather with a Blackberry smartphone inorder to access a cellular network.

The tablet will be available in January 2011, a bit surprised it won’t be in stores before the holiday season. A price has not been announced, though it’s expected to be substantially cheaper to an iPad. The price point for both the Playbook and Galaxy Tab is key inorder to competitively compete with the Almighty Apple.

Here are the specs for the Playbook:

  • 1 GHz Dual Core Processor
  • 1 GB RAM
  • 7 inch LCD display with 1024 x 600 screen resolution
  • Multitouch capacitive display
  • Dimensions: 5.1″ x 7.6″ x 0.4″
  • Weighs less than a pound at 400g
  • microUSB , micro HDMI and DLNA connectivity
  • Wi-Fi 802.11
  • Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR
  • Powered by QNX platform with multitasking
  • Full Adobe Flash 10.1 support
  • Built-in support for HTML 5
  • Video Conferencing with HD Quality and Stereo sound
  • 5 MP Rear Camera
  • 3 MP Front Camera
  • Video playback: 1080p HD video – H.264, MPEG4, WMV, DivX formats
  • Audio Playback :MP3, AAC, WMA
  • Pair with any Blackberry Device (min OS 5.0 device) via Bluetooth for Push Email , Calendar , Docs and BBM