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RIM Prepping Blackpad iPad Rival

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RIM is readying its own tablet computer and could release it as early as next week, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal. The rumours suggest that RIM will unveil the tablet at the Blackberry Developer Conference, taking place in San Francisco next week.

As we first mentioned last month, the device is rumoured to be called the BlackPad, and will run on an OS called QNX, rather than running on Blackberry OS 6. QNX comes from a company of the same name that RIM purchased in April and is best known for use in the automotive industry. It’s a leftfield choice to run a tablet computer, but clearly RIM hopes it will provide is will a unique selling point over the myriad Android based tablets on the way, not to mention the iPad.

The Wall Street Journal also suggested that RIM may move all of it future device to QNX, so if that’s the case it must have confidence it can give it the edge it currently lacks. While the initial hype over the Blackberry Torch seemed positive, it failed to blow us away when we had our first hands on look.

The Blackpad tablet will feature a 7in screen the reports say, which seems to be way many are going compared with Apple’s larger and heavier 9in iPad, but will not feature 3G connectivity, instead relying on Wi-Fi. As such, it may be difficult to secure discounted network deals, so it will need to be competitively priced. A UK spokesman would not offer any comment on the upcoming tablet, but we're confident that we will be seeing something new in tablet land next week.

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