Reasearch In Motion (RIM) revealed today that their first tablet PC, the BlackBerry PlayBook, will support Android applications. Android, an operating system owned and developed by Google is the platform upon which many of BlackBerry’s competitor’s operate.
The BlackBerry PlayBook will be smaller than Apple’s iPad 2, with a screen of only 7 inches. Rumor has it though, that this little tablet PC (weighing in at less than one pound) still packs a big punch. The PlayBook sports a hefty (for its size) 1GB of RAM and 1 GHz dual-core processor. That’s the same kind of power many regular sized laptop computers have. As RIM put it, the PlayBook has “Full computing power in a tablet format.”
By supporting a wider variety of content on their device, RIM is making their system accessible to a greater number of developers, which will likely result in a greater number of apps being produced–this could give them a leg up on more closed systems such as the iPad, where App development only comes in one format.
Reaserch In Motion’s investors seem happy with the developments–RIM stock closed at $62.49 (up 2.61% todayand up sharply from last week, where it closed just below $60 per share).
The BlackBerry PlayBook goes on sale in just under a month, but is available for pre-order now on their website.
Apple has been battling Nokia in court for years over similar patent violation complaints; industry experts suspect that Nokia is using the legal system in an effort to keep pace with rapidly developing mobile technology industry movers and shakers like Apple Inc.
Lately, many mobile technology companies such as Nokia, Apple, HTC, Motorola and Microsoft are vying for market space by using patent lawsuits to slow down their competition. The lawsuits range in scope, but cover nearly every aspect of mobile technology that you probably use every day, including everything from patents on cellular function to contact management and battery technology.
Winning a patent violation lawsuit can mean huge settlements and regular dividends from competitors for the winning company–this will often delay development of technology (while companies devise ways to avoid patent violation lawsuits) or keep a company from entering a particular market at all.