RIM launched its 1.0.5 BlackBerry Tablet OS upgrade for the 7-inch BlackBerry PlayBook tablet. The build includes a preloaded Facebook application and several more features.
Research In Motion has launched support for new
languages, a refreshed Facebook application, in-application payments and several
other upgrades to its BlackBerry PlayBook tablet.
RIM launched its 7-inch PlayBook tablet
on the QNX operating system April 19 and had enjoyed sales in the hundreds of
thousands of the gadget after some early tepid reviews. To be fair, sales of any tablet that isn't an Apple iPad haven't
made an impression to this point.
RIM, which has promised to keep PlayBook upgrades coming at a speedy
clip, said BlackBerry PlayBook Tablet OS v1.0.5 supports French,
Italian, Dutch, German, Spanish and UK English.
The new OS version also sports an improved Facebook for
BlackBerry PlayBook application, including video uploading, News Feed
improvements and better search, among other perks
PlayBook users will also get the Facebook application
preloaded on the new software build. Facebook for PlayBook was originally released
with the v1.0.3 upgrade May 2,
though users had to download that new app from the BlackBerry App World store.
The BlackBerry PlayBook tablet can also now be charged when
it is fully powered down. BlackBerry Tablet OS v1.0.5 will notify users if they
are using an incorrect charger with their PlayBook.
"For example, if you accidentally plug a BlackBerry
smartphone charger into the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet you will now receive an
alert on the screen to let you know that this charger will not charge your
tablet," RIM explained
Users may touch the battery indicator on the top right
corner of the home screen, whereupon a pop-up notification will appear and the
user can now choose to restart the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet, turn it off or
put it into standby mode.
BlackBerry Tablet OS v1.0.5 also offers automatic WiFi
hotspot detection, something the tablet should have launched with out of the
gate, to make connecting to a WiFi hotspot during the set up process much more
RIM also added support for the Traversal Using Relay NAT
(TURN) protocol to improve Video Chat connections between users when
their calls are relayed between a public network and a protected
business network that
resides behind a firewall.
How will users enjoy the new Facebook app and other
perks? Users who purchase PlayBook tablet on or after June 7 will be
automatically updated to v1.0.5 as part of the BlackBerry PlayBook setup
Existing PlayBook users will be presented with a software
update notification on the BlackBerry PlayBook status ribbon, and can also
check for the software update in the settings menu under software updates at
RIM also added the ability for PlayBook applications in
the BlackBerry App World storefront to include support for in-app payments.
In-app payments are a way for developers to incur revenue
streams by selling additional levels or tools for games and other products to
bolster the user experience.
Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) has long offered in-app payment support for
its iOS platform, though Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) recently added in-app payment capabilities both
for its Android Market
and its Chrome Web Store
Finally, RIM acquired
Scoreloop, which creates cross-platform,
social gaming toolkits for mobile developers. RIM said it will use the
ScoreLoop talent and toolsets to help developers create social apps through the
BBM Social Platform.