Rumour: RIM gets tablet fever with new BlackBerry device

Tablet could launch before the end of the year

Rumour: RIM gets tablet fever with new BlackBerry device
Given that almost every manufacturer under the sun has prepared – or is in the midst of preparing – some kind of response to iPad, it seems nonsensical that the company with the most to lose wouldn't also be working on a rival to Apple's new tablet.

RIM is the smartphone market leader in the US, and though the newly announced iPhone 4 might represent a more immediate threat to its current dominance, the Wall Street Journal reports the firm is working on a tablet to counter the impact of iPad.

What's more, it could launch before the end of the year.

Aiming for Apple

The paper claims people 'familiar with the company's plans' are currently experimenting with a BlackBerry based tablet, which would serve as a 'large-screen' companion to the firm's smartphone line-up.

The unnamed tablet is apparently only in an early stage of development - despite the 2010 launch predictions - and the paper's sources state it will connect to mobile networks via BlackBerry phone handsets.

Consumer focus

Just what kind of impact this would have on the app – and, specifically, gaming community – is unclear, although RIM has been keen to shake its 'enterprise only' reputation of late.

As such, it's claimed a new touchscreen smartphone with a slide-out keyboard is also in the works.

The handset is reported to run a new version of BlackBerry OS that has apparently been modelled on the feature-set of iOS – allowing users to swipe through screens and expand images with their fingers.
The Wall Street Journal

With a fine eye for detail, Keith Andrew is fuelled by strong coffee, Kylie Minogue and the shapely curve of a san serif font.