So much for rumors. Blackberry's parent company, Research in Motion, has unveiled its answer to Apple's iPad this week, and sweet relief, it's not called the BlackPad, Mercifully, RIM opted to call its new tablet the Blackberry Playbook instead.
Here are some of the other facts about the Playbook that the rumor mill screwed up (I'm staring at the floor and bowing my head right now - mea culpa, mea culpa).
1. It does not have a 10 inch screen. It has a 7.6 inch screen, making it half way in size between the Dell Streak (five inches) and the iPad (10 inch screen). It's essentially the same size as Samsung's Galaxy Tab, yet to be released in the United States.
2. It does not use Blackberry's latest greatest operating system, rather it runs on QNX. RIM bought QNX earlier this year. The Galaxy Tab runs on Android 2.2. Dell's Streak is an embarassment, pre-loaded with Android 1.6.
Aside from that, there are no real surprises.
1. It will be available in early 2011.
2. It will be WiFi only. However, you can tether it with your Blackberry. 3G and 4G versions are expected eventually down the line.
3. There are cameras on board front and back, a nice edition for the enterprise crowd looking for quick and dirty web conferencing on the fly.
There is still no official word on pricing.
As for the coming tablet wars, it appears we are officially game on now.