If you haven’t taken notice, the BlackBerry PlayBook is selling heavily. Thanks to retailers selling the PlayBook for $200, there are many new BlackBerry tablet owners. Retailers such as Best Buy and Staples are sold out, and at $200 they could sell out of their restock pretty quickly. This all makes sense. As we’ve said dozens of times, the PlayBook is one fine piece of hardware, and it has the makings of some great software. It’s just a little incomplete right now. We do know, however, that RIM plans an update in early 2012. The intrepid Kyle McInnes of BlackBerry Cool got some answers to PlayBook questions from RIM that shed some light on the PlayBook update, and what other goodies RIM has in store for 2012.
Regarding the addition of PIM (personal information manager) apps, there shouldn’t be any surprises. The native email app will contain spell check and predictive text, just as a normal BlackBerry smartphone. It works on the same push interface, using the same security measures. Basically, you can expect the same level of service from BlackBerry as always, which is a big relief. What’s also interesting is talk of new PlayBooks.
If you’ll remember, RIM had planned to release 4G PlayBook models last year, but that never happened. Since the PlayBook was, and still is, an incomplete device, that makes sense. But after the 2.0 update, we’ll see 4G models hit cellular carriers. The RIM representative says that he has not “heard anything that would put us off schedule from our early 2012 release.” So while customers now are getting a bargain on a $200 PlayBook, those who wait will be rewarded with 4G models.
Those who wait might also find larger screen sizes in the future. The representative wouldn’t commit to anything, but if sales go well enough we’re likely to see more sizes. After all, this version of the PlayBook will hardly be RIM’s last tablet effort.
With the market for tablets growing rapidly, it would be foolish to stop now. Future releases always open up possibilities for changes, and screen size is certainly one area where a manufacturer can provide variety.
There’s plenty more, mostly about specific software issues, so make sure you check out the whole interview. If you’ve bought a PlayBook, or plan to get one in the future, it’s required reading.