Could the apparently doomed Blackberry Playbook tablet have a lifeline after all? After reports of over a billion dollars’ worth of unsold inventory, RIM’s much maligned slate may have been given a delayed fillip by its dev community, as a user on the Crackberry Forums (‘Businesscat2000′) has managed to make iOS apps from Apple’s iPhone and iPad run on the Playbook.
The Blackberry Playbook had an infamously half-baked OS (the ‘QNX’), with key features like an Email client and a Calendar missing, among a lot, lot more.
It depended on something called the Blackberry Bridge, where you had to tether your Blackberry smartphone to get access to your email, appointments, etc. However, the declining popularity of smartphones made by Research in Motion was a huge spanner in their works, and the vast majority of the Playbook’s customer base had to make do with an incomplete OS. This resulted in a very limited developer community, and hence, there were barely any apps in the Blackberry App World meant for the Playbook.
A much delayed update to the QNX OS brought about a very nifty new feature – an Android App Player. It let users download Android app APKs and run them on the App Player, which acted as an emulator. It made Playbook users get access to a drastically larger app ecosystem, and made the purchase of the tablet seem like a better option than before.
But now, the aforementioned Crackberry Forums member, Businesscat2000, has managed to run even iOS apps in the Playbook. Even though his claim was initially met with disbelief, he dispelled any doubts that this could be a hoax by running multiple iPhone apps (Tiny Tower, Tomtom, etc.), albeit at a reduced 480×320 resolution.
Buying the Blackberry Playbook may not be the best idea in the world right now – even RIM has effectively ditched it and started working on its next-gen Blackberry 10 OS phones and tablets. But if you already own it now, these recent developments may just remove the bitter taste that its purchase may have left in your mouth.
[via The Verge]