The BlackBerry Tablet? It Probably Isn’t Close to Production

The BlackBerry BlackPad tablet probably will not be ready for sale anytime soon. BGR and Electronista are both reporting that they have sources telling them that this week’s BlackBerry Developers Conference will not be showing off any actual BlackPad hardware. In fact, even the operating system—which will be mentioned at the conference—is far from complete. Regardless of what you want to call this coming tablet (BlackPad, Cobalt and SurfBook are all unofficial names for it right now), it looks like it won’t be here in time for the holiday shopping season.

Rumors have claimed everything from the BlackPad having a multicore processor with Adobe Flash hardware acceleration to video calling features to an entirely new operating system. While it is true that Marvell—the maker of the processors in Research In Motion’s (RIM) BlackBerry smartphones—has developed a three core chipset for tablets, RIM might not even be close yet to deciding on the processor. The video calling features are still debatable at this point, with the Wall Street Journal saying that the BlackPad will have either one or two cameras and that the number has not been decided yet by the company. Err… so what about the operating system? At least that part looks like it is true.

RIM bought QNX Software Systems earlier this year. From what is known right now (all unofficial of course), RIM and QNX are working now on porting over what makes the BlackBerry operating system good, into the new one that QNX is building. RIM cannot just slap a coat of BlackBerry OS 6 paint on top of what QNX has already developed—it has to implement BES, BIS, encryption, battery saving technologies and all of the other stuff under the surface that we take for granted. Then it can start working on getting the user interface “BlackBerry enough” to keep current users happy. Oh, and RIM still isn’t sure yet if it will be switch all of its smartphones to the new operating system in the future.

Let’s keep our fingers crossed and hope that this thing is further along than anyone seems to think right now. Will this thing ever really materialize or is RIM just messing around with the idea and has no clue where it is headed right now?

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