Agile Computing Authors: Pat Romanski, Elizabeth White, Rene Buest, William Schmarzo, Stackify Blog

Related Topics: @CloudExpo, Wearables, BlackBerry Developer

@CloudExpo: Article

RIM Unveils its Tablet

Unlike the Apple iPad, the PlayBook is “Flash-loving”

Having been kicked in the teeth by both iPhone and Android smartphones this year, Research In Motion unveiled its rumored iPad copycat Monday in an attempt to stop both Apple and Google from leaching more of its revenues.

The thing is called the Blackberry PlayBook, a clear appeal to the company’s largely male installed base of Crackberry heads.

The tablet is positioned as a multitasking “enterprise-ready professional tablet” “perfect for either large organizations or an ‘army of one.’” However, it may have a split personality. Beside corporate power games, it’s also supposed to be good at playing traditional games.

Unlike Apple, the PlayBook is “Flash-loving.” It supports the Apple-scorned Adobe Flash Player 10.1 and Adobe Mobile AIR as well as the Apple-doted- on HTML 5 so RIM can brag that PlayBook will deliver “the real, full web experience to mobile users.”

Otherwise it’s smaller, thinner and lighter than the iPad measuring less than half an inch thick (5.1"x7.6"x0.4") and weighing 14 ounces with a seven- inch 1024 x 600 touchscreen display.

Initially the PlayBook won’t be able to connect to the Internet directly, which is actually a plus in enterprise terms.

It’s fitted with Bluetooth and Wi-Fi and in the absence of Wi-Fi it piggybacks on the Blackberry via Bluetooth to access the Internet (no separate service plan). That means that the smartphone’s content is viewable on the tablet, but actually stays on the phone and is only temporarily cached on the tablet (subject to IT policy controls). It disappears once the connection is broken so there’s theoretically less of a security risk and less of a manageability issue.

Eventually RIM is supposed to come up with 3G and 4G versions of the tablet.

The thing is powered by an unidentified 1GHz dual-core processor running on the Unix-like symmetric multiprocessing QNX Neutrino kernel that RIM acquired when it bought QNX earlier this year. For purposes of the PlayBook the operating system is called the BlackBerry Tablet OS and is reputed to offer a highly responsive and fluid touchscreen experience for apps and content services.

The Eclipse-supporting Neutrino, which runs on the PowerPC, x86, Mips, SH-4 and ARM chips, is supposed to be one of the most reliable, robust and secure (Common Criteria EAL 4+) real-time operating system architectures in the world. It supports mission-critical applications in everything from planes, trains and automobiles to medical equipment and the largest core routers that run the Internet not to mention, as Bloomberg does, the control systems in nuclear power plants and the US Army’s unmanned Crusher tanks. (Top that for reliability.)

The OS is POSIX-compliant so C-based code is portable. It supports Open GL for graphics-intensive 2D and 3D applications like gaming, and will run applications built in Mobile AIR as well as the new BlackBerry WebWorks app platform so apps (like Java apps) written for BlackBerry 6-based smartphones will also run on PlayBook.

The widget includes dual 3 MP front-facing, 5 MP rear-facing HD cameras for video capture and video conferencing that can both record HD video at the same time, and an HDMI-out port for presenting one’s creations on external displays. It has 1GB of RAM.

The dingus won’t be in retail store in the United States until early 2011 with rollouts in overseas to follow in Q2. However, developers and some corporate customers will get the widget in October for development and early testing. An SDK is supposed to be out in the next few weeks and developers can register for early access at www.blackberry.com/developers/ tabletos. The thing is supposed to use industry standard APIs.

There’s no price yet although Reuters says it should come in at the “lower range of prices for consumer tablets already in the suddenly congested market.

More Stories By Maureen O'Gara

Maureen O'Gara the most read technology reporter for the past 20 years, is the Cloud Computing and Virtualization News Desk editor of SYS-CON Media. She is the publisher of famous "Billygrams" and the editor-in-chief of "Client/Server News" for more than a decade. One of the most respected technology reporters in the business, Maureen can be reached by email at maureen(at)sys-con.com or paperboy(at)g2news.com, and by phone at 516 759-7025. Twitter: @MaureenOGara

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.

@ThingsExpo Stories
Dion Hinchcliffe is an internationally recognized digital expert, bestselling book author, frequent keynote speaker, analyst, futurist, and transformation expert based in Washington, DC. He is currently Chief Strategy Officer at the industry-leading digital strategy and online community solutions firm, 7Summits.
Digital Transformation and Disruption, Amazon Style - What You Can Learn. Chris Kocher is a co-founder of Grey Heron, a management and strategic marketing consulting firm. He has 25+ years in both strategic and hands-on operating experience helping executives and investors build revenues and shareholder value. He has consulted with over 130 companies on innovating with new business models, product strategies and monetization. Chris has held management positions at HP and Symantec in addition to ...
Cloud-enabled transformation has evolved from cost saving measure to business innovation strategy -- one that combines the cloud with cognitive capabilities to drive market disruption. Learn how you can achieve the insight and agility you need to gain a competitive advantage. Industry-acclaimed CTO and cloud expert, Shankar Kalyana presents. Only the most exceptional IBMers are appointed with the rare distinction of IBM Fellow, the highest technical honor in the company. Shankar has also receive...
Enterprises have taken advantage of IoT to achieve important revenue and cost advantages. What is less apparent is how incumbent enterprises operating at scale have, following success with IoT, built analytic, operations management and software development capabilities - ranging from autonomous vehicles to manageable robotics installations. They have embraced these capabilities as if they were Silicon Valley startups.
Internet-of-Things discussions can end up either going down the consumer gadget rabbit hole or focused on the sort of data logging that industrial manufacturers have been doing forever. However, in fact, companies today are already using IoT data both to optimize their operational technology and to improve the experience of customer interactions in novel ways. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Gordon Haff, Red Hat Technology Evangelist, shared examples from a wide range of industries – including en...
The standardization of container runtimes and images has sparked the creation of an almost overwhelming number of new open source projects that build on and otherwise work with these specifications. Of course, there's Kubernetes, which orchestrates and manages collections of containers. It was one of the first and best-known examples of projects that make containers truly useful for production use. However, more recently, the container ecosystem has truly exploded. A service mesh like Istio addr...
Rodrigo Coutinho is part of OutSystems' founders' team and currently the Head of Product Design. He provides a cross-functional role where he supports Product Management in defining the positioning and direction of the Agile Platform, while at the same time promoting model-based development and new techniques to deliver applications in the cloud.
Predicting the future has never been more challenging - not because of the lack of data but because of the flood of ungoverned and risk laden information. Microsoft states that 2.5 exabytes of data are created every day. Expectations and reliance on data are being pushed to the limits, as demands around hybrid options continue to grow.
Business professionals no longer wonder if they'll migrate to the cloud; it's now a matter of when. The cloud environment has proved to be a major force in transitioning to an agile business model that enables quick decisions and fast implementation that solidify customer relationships. And when the cloud is combined with the power of cognitive computing, it drives innovation and transformation that achieves astounding competitive advantage.
Poor data quality and analytics drive down business value. In fact, Gartner estimated that the average financial impact of poor data quality on organizations is $9.7 million per year. But bad data is much more than a cost center. By eroding trust in information, analytics and the business decisions based on these, it is a serious impediment to digital transformation.
Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life settlement products to hedge funds and investment banks. After, he co-founded a revenue cycle management company where he learned about Bitcoin and eventually Ethereal. Andrew's role at ConsenSys Enterprise is a mul...
As IoT continues to increase momentum, so does the associated risk. Secure Device Lifecycle Management (DLM) is ranked as one of the most important technology areas of IoT. Driving this trend is the realization that secure support for IoT devices provides companies the ability to deliver high-quality, reliable, secure offerings faster, create new revenue streams, and reduce support costs, all while building a competitive advantage in their markets. In this session, we will use customer use cases...
Digital Transformation: Preparing Cloud & IoT Security for the Age of Artificial Intelligence. As automation and artificial intelligence (AI) power solution development and delivery, many businesses need to build backend cloud capabilities. Well-poised organizations, marketing smart devices with AI and BlockChain capabilities prepare to refine compliance and regulatory capabilities in 2018. Volumes of health, financial, technical and privacy data, along with tightening compliance requirements by...
delaPlex is a global technology and software development solutions and consulting provider, deeply committed to helping companies drive growth, revenue and marketplace value. Since 2008, delaPlex's objective has been to be a trusted advisor to its clients. By redefining the outsourcing industry's business model, the innovative delaPlex Agile Business Framework brings an unmatched alliance of industry experts, across industries and functional skillsets, to clients anywhere around the world.
Headquartered in Plainsboro, NJ, Synametrics Technologies has provided IT professionals and computer systems developers since 1997. Based on the success of their initial product offerings (WinSQL and DeltaCopy), the company continues to create and hone innovative products that help its customers get more from their computer applications, databases and infrastructure. To date, over one million users around the world have chosen Synametrics solutions to help power their accelerated business or per...
DXWordEXPO New York 2018, colocated with CloudEXPO New York 2018 will be held November 11-13, 2018, in New York City and will bring together Cloud Computing, FinTech and Blockchain, Digital Transformation, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, AI, Machine Learning and WebRTC to one location.
DXWorldEXPO | CloudEXPO are the world's most influential, independent events where Cloud Computing was coined and where technology buyers and vendors meet to experience and discuss the big picture of Digital Transformation and all of the strategies, tactics, and tools they need to realize their goals. Sponsors of DXWorldEXPO | CloudEXPO benefit from unmatched branding, profile building and lead generation opportunities.
The best way to leverage your Cloud Expo presence as a sponsor and exhibitor is to plan your news announcements around our events. The press covering Cloud Expo and @ThingsExpo will have access to these releases and will amplify your news announcements. More than two dozen Cloud companies either set deals at our shows or have announced their mergers and acquisitions at Cloud Expo. Product announcements during our show provide your company with the most reach through our targeted audiences.
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that "Miami Blockchain Event by FinTechEXPO" has announced that its Call for Papers is now open. The two-day event will present 20 top Blockchain experts. All speaking inquiries which covers the following information can be submitted by email to [email protected] Financial enterprises in New York City, London, Singapore, and other world financial capitals are embracing a new generation of smart, automated FinTech that eliminates many cumbersome, slow, and expe...
DevOpsSummit New York 2018, colocated with CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO New York 2018 will be held November 11-13, 2018, in New York City. Digital Transformation (DX) is a major focus with the introduction of DXWorldEXPO within the program. Successful transformation requires a laser focus on being data-driven and on using all the tools available that enable transformation if they plan to survive over the long term. A total of 88% of Fortune 500 companies from a generation ago are now out of bus...