RIM's highly anticipated BlackBerry PlayBook is finally available for pre-order in the US, with the firm maintaining that shipping is on track despite originally announcing that the device would be available in retail outlets in "early 2011".
The PlayBook was announced in September and US and Canadian customers can now order the tablet online at Best Buy.
An entry-level version of the 7in device with 16GB of internal storage and Wi-Fi is available starting at $499. Customers can also opt for a 32GB model for $599 or a 64GB version for $699.
All specifications aside from the internal memory are the same, and the devices come with a 1GHz dual-core processor, 1GB RAM, 1080p HD output and the Blackberry Tablet OS.
Customers in the US and Canada are expected to begin receiving their tablets between 19 and 26 April. However, only customers willing to pay an additional $29.99 for express delivery are likely to get the device on 19 April.
V3.co.uk contacted RIM, but the manufacturer declined to confirm UK shipping and pricing dates. However, it was confirmed that an international rollout is on course for the second quarter.
In reality, it is likely that UK customers will have to wait for at least a month after the tablet is officially released in the US.
A 4G version of the PlayBook is also expected to launch in the summer, but RIM was unable to confirm additional details about this model.
V3.co.uk has had its hands on the device a number of times, most recently at a briefing with RIM last Monday.
Although we were impressed with the hardware, there were some software issues which we expect to be ironed out before launch.
We have a two-part video demonstration of the BlackBerry PlayBook showing some of the key features, including BlackBerry Bridging, HD video playback and multi-tasking.
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