RIM SurfBook tablet specs (aka BlackPad): an iPad for business?

By Richi Jennings. September 23, 2010.

Rumors are being mongered to say that Research In Motion will soon launch a 7" BlackBerry tablet. Codenamed BlackPad, RIM is expected by some to call it the SurfBook. Comparisons to Apple's iPad are inevitable: so, in IT Blogwatch, bloggers do precisely that!

Your humble blogwatcher curated these bloggy bits for your entertainment. Not to mention science is scary...


Marc Ferranti 'casts his net wide:

Research in Motion ... may introduce a tablet computer next week, according to a report. ... Persistent rumors ... have pointed to a BlackBerry tablet that would aim to compete with Apple's popular iPad. ... The device will have a 7-inch touchscreen and one or two built-in cameras, the report says.


Since Apple launched the iPad, many other hardware makers have been racing to release a competitive product.

Cade Metz, um, addz:

The long rumored RIM tablet ... will reach the market in the fourth quarter with a 7-inch display and, um, either one or two cameras. ... It will only connect to cellular networks through the company's BlackBerry handhelds. The tablet will not ... sources say, use the RIM's BlackBerry 6 operating system. ... It will use a brand new OS fashioned by QNX Software System ... purchased by RIM earlier this year.


RIM plans to eventually move its BlackBerry smartphone to the new QNX operating system as well.


It will use chips from Marvell Technology Group, an outfit based in Santa Clara, California.

Jennifer Valentino-DeVries has brains:

It’s a no-brainer for RIM to introduce a tablet ... but it’s a little surprising that the tablet won’t be using BlackBerry 6, which was just introduced. ... The [new] software is described by testers as a worthy competitor to Apple’s iOS ... and Google’s Android.

Scot Finnie hopes it's better for the enterprise than iOS:

Apple has, it seems, intentionally hobbled the iPad. There are so many things it can't do. ... I'm not wowed by the apps that are designed to ... perform any business-oriented function.


[iOS] is not designed to host content-creation activities. It's a media reader/player. ... Apple is selling the tablet form factor short. ... I want to have access to the file system for managing files, without ... kludgey third-party utility workarounds. I want business apps.


I'm far more impressed by what the iOS operating system cannot do than what it can do.

Mont Cessna flies in to ask what's in a name?

RIM filed a trademark for the name ‘SurfBook’ last month in Canada. ... RIM’s device names usually are one word and catchy: Curve, Bold, Storm, Style, etc. ... I kind of think that SurfBook sounds too much like… Facebook.


Why not just call it the BlackBook? After all, it is going to be filled with names and addresses. ... People will snicker over new tech device names no matter what they are. At least the iPad jokes have gotten stale.

Meanwhile, Brian Heater examines the anatomy of a rumor:

Last night I received an e-mail from ... Citrix stating that the company, "confirmed today that [it] will support the upcoming Blackberry Black Pad when it ships." Odd, I thought ... I'm pretty sure RIM hasn't actually announced the thing.


I wondered if ... I was simply losing my mind.


And Finally...

The scariest video you have ever watched in the name of science

Don't miss out on IT Blogwatch:

Richi Jennings, your humble blogwatcher
  Richi Jennings is an independent analyst/consultant, specializing in blogging, email, and security. A cross-functional IT geek since 1985, you can follow him as @richi on Twitter, pretend to be richij's friend on Facebook, or just use good old email: itbw@richij.com.

You can also read Richi's full profile and disclosure of his industry affiliations.

Copyright © 2010 IDG Communications, Inc.

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