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BlackBerry PlayBook Tablet to Run Android Apps

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Among the year’s most anticipated tablet PCs, the business-oriented BlackBerry PlayBook, on sale April 19 for $499 and higher, will also enjoy a leg up on iPad 2 via its support for Android apps.

The 7-inch slate computer will run both BlackBerry Java and Android 2.3 applications, allowing users access to thousands of downloadable software programs for everything from music listening to movie watching and game playing.

As there are more than 350,000 apps available to iPod, iPhone and iPad 2 owners, the move is clearly designed to offer users greater choice and a wider range of features in the face of overwhelming competition. By allowing access to Android and BlackBerry apps on a single platform, creator Research in Motion hopes to broaden its catalog, which offers fewer exclusive outings, and foster continued third-party software development.

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