03/23/2012 02:25 EDT | Updated 05/23/2012 05:12 EDT

RIM says developers to get first taste of BlackBerry 10 operating system in May

TORONTO - Research in Motion (TSX:RIM) says developers will get a taste of the much anticipated new BlackBerry 10 operating system in May.

Attendees at the company's developers' conference in Orlando, Fla., will get a prototype device, called the BlackBerry 10 Dev Alpha, which will function as a testing platform for programming apps.

Waterloo, Ont.-based RIM stresses that the phone and its pre-loaded software are not official products, and the operating system in particular is not a final version of BlackBerry 10.

The phone will contain a modified version of the software used on RIM's PlayBook tablet, "which shows the path to the BlackBerry 10 OS."

"This device will allow developers to test the applications they are building with our BlackBerry 10 tool sets," RIM said in a release.

RIM has said its first phone with the new BlackBerry 10 operating system is expected sometime late this year.