WiMax-enabled tablet heading for Sprint this summer

By now, we've heard all about Research In Motion's upcoming tablet, the BlackBerry PlayBook, as well as the pressure on RIM to make it a successful device, and the alleged battery and OS issues that have marred its pre-release reputation. What we didn't know was that a 4G version of the PlayBook is heading Sprint's way.

Sprint made the news official today, in an early morning press release that said the 4G model "will be the first BlackBerry PlayBook model to include wide area wireless connectivity."

"Together with Sprint, we are now building on that performance advantage with 4G and providing an unparalleled mobile experience for users," said Mike Lazaridis, President and Co-CEO at Research In Motion, in the press release.

While no pricing for the device was given, the new model is expected to hit Sprint this summer. And while it is a different iteration, it will bear most of the same specs as the non-4G PlayBook: a 1GHz dual-core processor, 1 GB RAM, the new BlackBerry Tablet OS (based on QNX); and support for Adobe Flash 10.1, Adobe Mobile AIR, and HTML-5.

Sprint's burgeoning 4G WiMax network is currently available in 71 markets across the country, including the most recent addition of the San Francisco Bay Area.

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