The tablet wars are hot and the tablet category is putting the netbook industry in a serious hurt. The popularity of the iPad tablet is a direct cause of Acer slipping from the number 2 spot with sales of its netbooks plummeting last year. One of the tablets that had people talking was the Blackberry PlayBook.
This is the first tablet from RIM and the company has announced today the retail partners for the tablet. RIM says that the tablet will be in 20,000 retail stores around the country, which will make it easy for people that are interested to walk into a store and walk out with one.
“The BlackBerry PlayBook is an amazing tablet that is already being widely praised as a multi-tasking powerhouse with an uncompromised web experience and an ultra-portable design,” said Mike Lazaridis, President & Co-CEO, Research In Motion. “Given the high level of customer interest in the BlackBerry PlayBook, we are particularly pleased to be working with such an amazing lineup of retail partners.”
The Playbook with 16GB of storage and WiFi only will sell for $499 in the US and Canada. In the US, the retailers will include Best Buy, Office Depot, RadioShack, Staples, and just about all the major and minor wireless carriers that sell Blackberry smartphones.
In Canada fans will be able to get the PlayBook from Best Buy, Costco, Future Shop, Sears, and lots more. The weird part for me is that Sears is selling the PlayBook in Canada, but isn't listed for the US. If you have managed to miss all the coverage of the PlayBook, the tablet has a 7-inch screen, runs the Blackberry OS, and supports full flash content. A version with 32GB and 64GB of storage is offered and a version with Mobile broadband is offered as well.
The screen resolution is 1024 x 600 and the device uses a dual-core processor at 1GHz. It has 1080p HDMI output and 1GB of RAM with a HD video camera and 3MP front and 5MP rear cameras. The tablet also supports 802.11a/b/g/n and Bluetooth.