Now a rival for the iPad2 from Blackberry - at the same price

Keep taking the tablets! Things are really hotting up on the mini-computer front. First the iPad, then the Xoom, now the Playbook

The BlackBerry PlayBook is to go on sale in the U.S. and Canada on April 19 for $499 to $699 - the same bottom line as Apple's iPad 2. No word yet of a UK launch date or price,

Manufacturers Research In Motion said today that customers can start pre-ordering the tablets through the Best Buy chain of electrical stores. The PlayBook, with a 7-inch screen, smaller than the iPad, runs BlackBerry software. It can connect to a phone, providing a bigger screen . Research In Motion Ltd. claims the Playbook is the first "professional-grade tablet."

The $499 PlayBook comes with 16 gigabytes of memory. For $599, you get 32 gigabytes and for $699, 64 gigabytes.

Staff Writer

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