Let the CrackPad jokes begin. The past several days has seen multiple reports that RIM is working on a BlackBerry OS-based tablet device of its own, codenamed either Cobalt or, we rilly rilly hope, BlackPad.
BlackBerry Leaks said late last week that it “received word from a connect” that RIM’s 8.9-inch slate will be smaller and thinner than an iPad and might be partly built by Hon Hai, the Taiwanese/Chinese manufacturer of many things Apple, including the iPad.
Here’s how BlackBerry Leaks imagines it:
So skinny, it’s almost 2-dimensional.
And here’s another FrankenShopped rendition, courtesy of Sizlopedia:
Did someone order the BlackBerry Storm in XXXL?
And here’s another version, courtesy of TheStreet.com:
The mock-up screen looks 4:3. Isn’t everything moving towards 16:9 wide-screen?
TheStreet, quoting Wall Street analysts, said today the tablet will run Marvell’s Armada ARM chip, which recently went quad-core (the iPad supposedly uses a single-core ARM Cortex-A8 chip).
The BlackPad would be built by Taiwanese laptop maker Quanta. And, says TheStreet, it will come out in 2011, replacing a now-killed Android-based tablet was supposed to emerge this fall.
“Everyone is taking a second look at that product roadmap,” an analyst told TheStreet. “It has to compare favorably to the iPad.”
While this blog focuses on mobile business, I’m keenly interested if and how RIM can make the generally trickier move from enterprise to consumer market, which the BlackPad would target. So far, it’s doing well – RIM just bumped Motorola from the #5 spot globally for the entire cellphone market.
But the vagaries of making shiny goods for consumers, especially – Omigod! – teenagers, is something that scares this just-turned-40-something. So best of luck to our pals in Waterloo!