From Jeremy: Here’s a guest post that discusses utilizing the BlackBerry Playbook2. Food for thought in the tablet space.
One of the highlights of the BlackBerry lineup is the underrated Playbook, RIM’s exemplary BlackBerry business services tablet. While the hardware’s remained unchanged, the operating system recently got a facelift on February 21, 2012, in the form of Playbook OS 2.0. Playbook OS 2.0 is a QNS-based mobile platform designed to up BlackBerry’s game when it comes to tablets. Here are a few of the most notable features of the latest tablet operating system from RIM.
A More Refined UI
While BlackBerry users tend to value functionality and performance over looks, an intuitive User Interface is important when it comes to getting the most out of a platform. Playbook OS 2.0 cleans up the screen a bit, and improves the App Dock by making it fully customizable. Users can easily add and remove application icons from the App Dock with a few long presses, which alleviates some of the frustration early adopters experienced with the first iteration of Playbook OS.
Email, Networking & Social Media
A common complaint among the BlackBerry faithful is that the original Playbook OS didn’t feature native, built-in applications for accessing email and messaging accounts. Playbook OS 2.0 rectifies the situation, offering a native rather web-based email client, support for calendar and contacts, support for HD multimedia playback and improved video chat capabilities. Playbook OS 2.0 places a renewed emphasis on social media with the integration of Gist into native applications.
BlackBerry Bridge Remote Control
The BlackBerry Bridge Remote Control feature allows users to tether a smart phone to their tablet via Bluetooth. Once set up, one can use their smart phone as a remote control for their BlackBerry tablet. It features support for PowerPoint, which means you can use your phone as a “clicker” for PowerPoint presentations. One of the niftiest built-in features of BlackBerry Bridge is its ability to allow users with physical keyboards on their phones to type up documents on their Playbook wirelessly.
Probably the most game-changing feature of Playbook OS 2.0 is its ability to run Android applications. Once users have upgraded to the new operating system, they can easily repackage Android apps to run on their Playbook. The early reviews from real users demonstrate that the technology works fairly well for porting applications from one platform to the other.
The BlackBerry Playbook offers decent hardware specifications and a slick, seamless operating system to go with it. It’d be a mistake to write off the Playbook as an “also-ran” that’s not worthy of consideration. If you like the idea of an iPad but need something that’s more squarely focused on Business services, the Playbook might be the tablet for you.
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