CES 2012: BlackBerry PlayBook software updated next month

BlackBerry PlayBook

The next version of software running on RIM's PlayBook tablet will give users some of the functionality they've longed for from day one, including native email support.

The BlackBerry maker have attendees at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES), in Las Vegas this week a sneak peek at what is coming when version two of the software is made available next month.

Those using PlayBooks running on the updated software, will be able to access their emails straight from the tablet - thanks to a new, unified inbox - rather than having to pair the device with a BlackBerry handset, as is the case now.

The unified inbox boasts a built-in messaging app that will help users manage their social networking feeds as well as emails, RIM said.

There's also an email management tool that aids search, auto signatures and other features of use to business users and consumers alike.

"BlackBerry PlayBook is already recognised for delivering powerful performance, true multi-tasking, advanced web browsing and HD multimedia in an ultra-portable design," said RIM's president and co-CEO, Mike Lazaridis.

"With BlackBerry PlayBook OS 2.0 we are building on this strong foundation, as well as leveraging our strengths in communications, social integration and productivity, to allow people to use their BlackBerry PlayBook in new ways throughout the day."

The new software also features an updated version of Documents To Go, including new formula wizards and presentation editing functionality.

RIM has also promised to extend the app catalogue current available for the PlayBook with the launch of the software.

If users do choose to pair their BlackBerry with the PlayBook, under the update, they'll be able to use it as a keyboard and mouse to power their tablet device, making it easier to launch and close applications and execute other commands.

Maggie Holland

Maggie has been a journalist since 1999, starting her career as an editorial assistant on then-weekly magazine Computing, before working her way up to senior reporter level. In 2006, just weeks before ITPro was launched, Maggie joined Dennis Publishing as a reporter. Having worked her way up to editor of ITPro, she was appointed group editor of CloudPro and ITPro in April 2012. She became the editorial director and took responsibility for ChannelPro, in 2016.

Her areas of particular interest, aside from cloud, include management and C-level issues, the business value of technology, green and environmental issues and careers to name but a few.