Users of the BlackBerry PlayBook will soon be able to navigate and control the tablet without using their fingers with the BlackBerry Mini Keyboard.
Research In Motion (RIM) introduced today the new accessory, which has been designed to be ultra portable at a thickness of less than 6mm.
The keyboard also comes with a convertible case that doubles as a stand for the tablet.
In addition to a full QWERTY keyboard, the BlackBerry Mini Keyboard offers an integrated touchpad that that supports BlackBerry PlayBook gestures, allowing users to use the BlackBerry PlayBook as easily as using the touchscreen on the tablet itself. The touchpad also offers additional gestures similar to the standard mouse and touchpad controls on a laptop.
When the keyboard is active, the PlayBook tablet’s virtual keyboard remains hidden, freeing up 100pc of the display for the task at hand.
“Whether you’re typing email, creating documents, surfing the web or using other apps, the BlackBerry Mini Keyboard and its integrated carrying case is an ideal accessory,” said James Poulton, director, Advanced Accessories.
The keyboard connects to a BlackBerry PlayBook tablet via Bluetooth, and features 128-bit encryption. It uses the micro-USB charger that comes with the BlackBerry PlayBook (one less charger to carry), and the keyboard battery lasts up to 30 days on a full charge.
The BlackBerry Mini Keyboard also works with BlackBerry PlayBook 2.0 Messages, Contacts and Calendar apps, as well as Documents To Go.
The BlackBerry Mini Keyboard is now available for pre-order internationally for US$119.99. In Canada, it is also available for pre-order exclusively at The Source.
The BlackBerry Mini Keyboard ships 23 March.