The BlackBerry PlayBook tablet was announced today at RIM’s Developer Conference, and it looks like we’re already talking about the next iteration of the device. Shortly after the keynote wrapped up, there was a session conducted with the QNX CEO Dan Dodge which ran through some of the technical details of the PlayBook’s operating system, and as interesting as that was, the real fireworks came during the Q&A session. When asked about whether carriers would be selling the device, RIM implied that it wouldn’t necessarily be tied to carriers, since it was Wi-Fi only, which was then followed up with a question about any kind of cellular connectivity, to which Dodge replied:
“You can infer. There’s a roadmap of planned releases moving forward. The first version is Wi-Fi. The question you should be asking before that is ‘when is the version coming out with 4G?’ But don’t ask that question, because we aren’t going to answer it. Other than that, ‘What does RIM do as a company? What is their expertise?’ “
Of course, that’s far from an official acknowledgment that QNX and and RIM are working on a 4G BlackBerry tablet, but it pretty much says that we wouldn’t be stupid for speculating that they are. Personally, I’m happy enough with the PlayBook as is – with twin HD-capable cameras, a Flash-ready operating system, and a nice 7″ size that isn’t too big and not too small, I think it can live with tethering it to a BlackBerry for a little while. Besides, with the still-nascent coverage of WiMAX, and the natal state of LTE, there’s really not that much of a rush.
Be sure to take a look at our eyes-on experience with the BlackBerry PlayBook if you want to see more of it.