BlackBerry DevCon 2011 has come and past — at least the US stop — which should have meant good news for PlayBook users. This is when we were promised a PlayBook update that would bring native contacts, calendars, BBM, and email — plus Android apps. And yet here we are, the Tuesday after DevCon, with not a peep about such an update. What gives?
As it turns out, RIM has run into some trouble with the update. This is no small issue, either. As Boy Genius Report notes, we could be in store for another four months of waiting. Yes, the PlayBook’s OS 2.0 is apparently scheduled to hit in mid-February 2012. BGR provides the grim details.
Apparently one major obstacle centers on BBM and how RIM can handle only one PIN per account. Since you use the same account for your PlayBook and your smartphone, that presents some problems. Apparently RIM wanted to solve the issue in the same way Apple did with iMessage on the iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch, but “that isn’t happening.” So when you do get the update and you bridge your smartphone and PlayBook, you’ll get tow separate contact lists. Oof.
Still, the issue itself is not as frustrating as the lack of an update. PlayBook users are again left out in the cold, still requiring that bridge to get the most basic tablet functions. This hurts RIM, too, since they can’t reasonably market the PlayBook to non-BlackBerry users. By the time RIM releases the update, the PlayBook will be nearly a year old.
We’ll see dozens of Android tablets hit the market by that time, and there’s a chance that an iPad 3 could be in the works. That’s going to make life difficult for RIM.
I was really excited to hear about the PlayBook update in October. It seemed like it was coming at the right time. Now? I’m just filled with sadness.