Wednesday, August 4, 2010

RIM BlackPad Expected To Complete with Apple's iPad

Research In Motion is expected to introduce the BlackPad to compete with rival Apple's iPad, which currently dominates the tablet market. RIM recently acquired, and is also expected to introduce the BlackBerry Bold 9800 to regain smartphone market share from Apple's iPhone. RIM faces an uphill battle with the BlackPad.

Research In Motion will introduce its own tablet computer, called BlackPad, in November, according to news sources. The BlackBerry maker is moving to compete with rival Apple, which currently dominates the tablet market with its iPad.

RIM is also expected to introduce the BlackBerry Bold 9800 smartphone with a sliding QWERTY Relevant Products/Services keyboard next month to recover market share lost to Apple's iPhone. According to IDC, RIM's share of the global smartphone market was 19.4 percent in the first quarter, down from 20.9 percent a year earlier, while Apple rose to 16.1 percent from 10.9 percent.

News sources said RIM's BlackPad will be about the same size as the iPad and include both Wi-Fi and Bluetooth so users can connect to the Internet through smartphones. The price is expected to be close to the iPad, which currently starts at $499.

The operating system for the BlackPad is not known, but could be the upcoming BlackBerry 6. RIM and AT&T could discuss that operating system at a press conference next week expected to focus on the Bold 9800.

Canada-based RIM recently acquired the domain

Even with a tablet, RIM will have to scramble to compete with the more than 225,000 apps available for the iPad and iPhone on Apple's App Store. RIM's BlackBerry App World had a bit more than 9,000 apps as of Friday.

The BlackPad will reportedly have front and back cameras for videoconferencing. News sources said it will also be tied to the BlackBerry e-mail system used by many enterprises.

With more than three million iPads sold, Apple has a tremendous market lead and RIM will be playing catch-up along with tablets expected from Hewlett-Packard, LG Electronics, and Samsung. Dell Relevant Products/Services has already introduced its Android-powered Dell Streak tablet and smartphone in the United Kingdom and has a large volume of pre-orders for its U.S. debut.

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