CrackBerry Mailbag: The Death of the PlayBook

BlackBerry PlayBook Graveyard
By Kevin Michaluk on 1 Apr 2014 01:14 pm EDT

Following yesterday's BlackBerry PlayBook update and subsequent recognition that this is the last OS update the BlackBerry PlayBook will ever see, the community has been pretty vocal. Looking back at the history of the PlayBook, it really is a sad story. So much potential, but instead we're left with shattered dreams, broken promises and what still feels all these years later, like an unfinished project.

What a lot of people may not realize is that the vision for original BlackBerry tablet was much simpler. As the story goes, what Research In Motion founder Mike Lazaridis originally wanted was a simple big screen companion device for his BlackBerry Smartphone. Much more a simple multimedia accessory and much less a full blown standalone tablet. Plans were already in motion on this one before Apple announced the original iPad in early 2010, but after that announcement BlackBerry pivoted and the vision for BlackBerry's tablet became much BIGGER, and of course, much more difficult to execute on.

What's ironic, and is well illustrated by the message I received this morning from CrackBerry member Jsolts, is that the original basic "big window to a BlackBerry" functionality is still what's wanted today!

Subject: The Death of the PlayBook

Hey Kevin, 

First off just want to say I've been a member of this community for a while now, and being a fellow Winnipeger I always noticed and got a kick out of the Winnipeg landmarks that would appear in the images you would post.

I am a huge supporter of BlackBerry, from way back when when I used to manage a Rogers Wireless store and was handed this new fangled RIM 950 and was told to "make it a part of my life." They claimed these things would be all the rage and everyone would have one. In reality, they were right.

Since that day I have owned almost every BlackBerry released in Canada, and as I state publicly you'll have to pry my BlackBerry out of my cold dead hands!

Anyhow, to the topic at hand.

Like many people I purchased a PlayBook to use for business purposes when they launched and despite its short comings I felt that BlackBerry was really on to something with the PlayBook OS. I thought if they could take this and continue to develop it then BB10 was going to be amazing. I actually went out and bought 8 playbooks for members of my family all over the world to keep in touch.

Paired with my 9800, the PlayBook bridge became an unmatched/unstoppable combo.

When the Z10 was released last year I was 12 and 13th on the list to get one from Rogers. When I tried to pair them with my PlayBooks I was disappointed at the loss of the integration that I had with the legacy OS, but was blown away at how much the work load that the Z10 took away from the PlayBook.

And just like that my PlayBook was retired to the drawer of forgotten electronics.

Every now and then I would be in a situation where I would want the bigger screen of the PlayBook to do a presentation, or to view an attachment on a bigger screen but lacked the connectivity to do it.

We are all aware of the broken promises of BB10 on the PlayBook, and yes, I'm disappointed, but I understand the business behind the decision.

People keep hoping for a "lite" version of BB10 for the PlayBook or to be given an unlocked boot loader, or updated Android runtime, but lets face it - with the announcement of end of support for the PlayBook it just ain't gonna happen.

Why am I telling you all this information that you already know? Cause I can't understand why they can't simply make a bridge style app that allows you to use the PlayBook as a dummy i/o companion device to a BB10 phone.

I would be more than happy if i could simply use the PlayBook in a "Miracast" type scenario with my Z30 doing all the actual computing and processing, and have the playbook be the output of the video, and you could also use the tactile input from the screen on the PlayBook to control the z30. The PlayBook would be nothing more than a I/O device. It wouldn't do any other work. This would eliminate the "lack of ram" issue preventing it from running BB10.

I know they had conceptually designed the PlayBook as a companion device for the BBOS phones and I think this would allow us to use it in that fashion but with BB10.

In my opinion, the biggest advantage of the PlayBook is the bridge functionality when used with a BB phone, I don't feel that it is a strong stand alone device in it's current state. I don't see why this isn't a simple solution that would help people who invested in these playbooks to extend the functionality and lifespan of this device.

I know you are probably THE MOST knowledgeable blackberry guy out there.

Am I way off here or is there something that I don't get that is preventing this from happening?! 

Thanks for you time, and thanks for building this great community.

To answer Jsolt's question, my understanding is that it's really a business decision. Technically, if BlackBerry wanted to, they could likely execute on the request here to make the PlayBook simply act as a connected screen to a BB10 device, displaying what is shown on the phone and accepting inputs back from the tablet. You can do a lot with software if you want. Hell, look no further than at just how far BlackBerry pushed the BBOS up from essentially being a two-way pager into a BlackBerry 7 phone.

The bigger *harsh* reality, is why would they want to? This would be an investment that would result in no more new PlayBook sales and no new income to the company. With BlackBerry in the process of turning itself around, the focus has to be on new growth and profitability. It's just the way it is.


A Leaky Trip Down Memory Lane

The message from Jsolts today actually reminded me of a leak I received years ago back in early 2010 just as tablet mania was about to begin. I couldn't post on it at the time at the request of the source, but at this point there's no harm in posting it. It's actually an email that was sent out following one of BlackBerry's Monday Morning Meetings. This one was particularly interesting, as it pointed to BlackBerry's work on not one, but actually two tablets. 

Recently in the MMM, Jim discussed the development of two products, an ebook reader (code name Tiel) and a tablet device (code name Cobalt). Here are the overviews of the two devices for your information and to briefly explain the concepts behind them


The first device, Teal, can be thought of as a Bluetooth extend reader for most type of Grayscale content. 

• ebook reader
o Teal is like any other ebook reader out on the market today minus some functionality and features 
§ Functionality was traded off for a reduced price against other ebook readers in market
o Grayscale using Eink technology with a 5” screen size
o BlackBerry does all the heavy lifting – ebook is just a display screen connected over Bluetooth
o Tiel’s OS will be developed by Short Covers 
• Short Covers will have exclusivity for approx. 12 months for all ebooks
o Additional ebooks distributors may integrate into Short Covers’ OS after exclusivity period ends
o Due to the Short Covers’ OS still being developed, we are unsure of how hard this integration may be
• Other  multimedia applications
o Due to current project scope, other forms of multimedia will be restricted to Grayscale content types only (ie. No magazines)
o RIM should focus on partners’ products that transfer well to grayscale (ie. Newspapers) 
• Timeline
o Product is due out in April 
o Product’s scope and features are not set and are still being negotiated 

The second, Cobalt, is a tablet device focused on the rendering of different types of multimedia content (rich print, video, music, etc). 

• Multimedia tablet
o Feature set is still not defined but the current form factor is:
§ Fold out tablet with multimedia capabilities (colour/sound/ possible touch screen)
§ Product will have the ability to function with a variety of multimedia inputs (video, ebooks, emagazines, music, RSS, etc)
§ Able to run independent of BlackBerry
§ Ability to edit documents or make notes
• No partners have been announced

In this case, it seems BlackBerry was talking to Chapters/Indigo about helping them build what would ultimately become the Kobo eBook reader. That's what Teal was about.

And Cobalt was the beginnings of the PlayBook - a basic multimedia tablet. Even at this point it was only stated as "possibly" having a touch screen. Crazy.

So there you have it. Maybe we'll see "new" leaks happen less, but we still have a few in the old archives we can probably dig up and share. :) 

Reader comments

CrackBerry Mailbag: The Death of the PlayBook


I updated my Playbook to the latest software release, this morning. Still runs like an outdated machine on dial up DSL, compared to, BB10.

Thankfully, I barely ever use it because my Z30 has replaced it with its glorious 5 in Super Amoled screen....

CB10 from the Z30

It's sad that Tiel and Cobalt were both designed to address some of the major functions of tablets today (less the apps). But the PlayBook was more... here it is, see if you can figure out what to do with it.

It wasn't really great at anything and most of the common uses like ereading were kind of hard to setup and use.

I want a BlackBerry 10 tablet, 10" preferably.

Go high with the specs and include things like an ir sensor. I would like to use it for total home automation control

Posted via CB10

I don't buy the idea that a BlackBerry 'nontablet' would have been a success. The majority of people will never want to be carrying around a big chunk of hardware that relies on another piece of hardware to function.

The problem with the playbook was that it wasn't nearly as sexy as the iPad, and lacked the features to override that deficiency. I bought one, but I hardly ever used it, and it still sits dusty on a shelf. If it had been the general size of the iPad, with BBM and some high end specs, it would have sold. It didn't.

I'd love to see another BlackBerry tablet, but I won't miss the first one.

Join the Cause @ BlackBerry Bootleg Marketing Channel - C003483F4

if there was like the email above states a simple "miracast" type function with input from a keyboard on the playbook being able to control things such as typing an email to be sent on the phone etc...
Almost everyone I know who has a tablet, has a phone with them as well...I don't think the tablet being dependent on the phone would matter to a lot of people and the added functionality would be great..

Totally agree. Unless the market direction makes a major change, people with a tablet also have a phone. This answer wouldn't do for those carrying something other than a BB phone, tho.

Sad, but the fact is, my 3 PBs are still hard at work and have a full day ahead of them. And when I am walking around in the audience tonight as I give a 3 hour presentation, controlling my PB tethered HDMI out via Bridge from my Z10, it will astound the audience as it always has. I never tire watching the audience fiddling with their phones and tabs trying to replicate what my wickedly brilliant little PB does with the greatest of ease (evil grin here).

When they lay me down to rest, tucked under my hands folded across my chest will be a BlackBerry PlayBook (with flower wall paper, of course). Tabs are now a permanent part of my life, so who knows what else I will be using. And we can all hope for PB2.

The tablet depending upon the phone was precisely what people complained about with the Playbook in the first place - no contacts, no native email, no calendar.

If it could do both - standalone and companion - then I think it'd be a winner.

That's because BlackBerry marketed it as a stand alone tablet and not a big screen companion of a BlackBerry phone. Besides, most complains were coming from the expectations that were set by the iPad..

Posted via CB10

When the news of the last update of all times came, I thought "Time to give into the iPad Mini urges".

But the tablet still does all the stuff it used to - some not as fast, due to my having upgraded all the other hardware I had (ultrabook+Z10 compared to old ass HP laptop and 9780). But it functions well. I will stick to it till something else comes along.

It may not be a BlackBerry something though.

Same here. Besides, the functionality, the duo of my playbook and Z10 make lot of people I meet get surprised and question about my loyalty with a struggling company. I see each question as an opportunity to show these people the power and awesomeness of BlackBerry 10 device.

And these two together also make for a great picture. :)

Posted via CB10

Same with me. It was even the inspiration for me to start developing apps, as I'm sure many other weekend coders. The playbook will always have a dear place in my heart. I never had a tablet before but I did have a blackberry phone. When the playbook came around, I learned about this cool new thing called "webworks" which would allow someone with Web-site design experience to actually make a stand-alone app. So I started down this incredible journey of being a BlackBerry developer and can you imagine how many people were also inspired to learn to make apps? The amount of positive karma the playbook exuded, despite the frustrations... My first app, smoking calculator, was part of a BlackBerry promo which was looking for new app submissions, and everyone who met the deadline and criteria would get a free playbook!

So I bought my first playbook when it went on that firesale for $199 (the first major one I guess it would have been fall of 2011)? It was my first and still only tablet. Then by early 2012 I did my first app using webworks and won another playbook which I gave to my wife. During most of 2012 I made another bunch of webworks apps, including my Talking Alarm Text Cloc. Then another promo came in spring and summer of 2012 to use the marmalade sdk to make an app... That led to the creation of Quantum Colliders game in the fall of 2012.

All along little did I know we were secretly being trained into developing BB10 apps. By summer 2012 we already knew the Z10 was coming. I was lucky enough to get a device alpha A from RIM and started porting my webworks and marmalade sdk apps over and was surprised to see them work. Then in early 2013 I was lucky to trade in my dev alpha A for a red Z10 LE. Made a bunch more apps, now mostly for phone but also working on playbook... However I started to learn more about Cascades and was disappointed to find out it wasn't available on playbook.

So with cascades I finally made some built for blackberry apps (like memory calculator and converter pro), earned myself another red Z10 for the wife, and managed to get a dev alpha c (q10 precursor) which blackberry generously gave me to help develop apps and adapt some of my existing apps to the different screen resolution. This is now during 2013 and mostly just refining and waiting for more ideas and having fun, but of course in the background wondering if all that time spent learning to develop on blackberry would be wasted. I think not... In fact, Blackberry was extremely supportive and perhaps it was because of their troubles that they reached out to devs of all experience levels and backgrounds... As long as we were willing to learn and put in the time, they were there.

So I owe it to playbook for an amazing ride over the past few years and I will continue to use them until they have completely worn out, all 3 of them (and I do use it in a daily basis to read and view blogs and YouTube ). I will always remember you, playbook!

And the talk of loyalty from BlackBerry to the customers by the current CEO, just like all before him, is just that, TALK!

Posted via CB10

Agreed. We have been repeatedly spit upon by each successive CEO's blatant lies about "loyalty towards long-time BlackBerry users" - the very people who've kept this company afloat through the bad times as well as the good times. Man up Chen. Loyalty is a two-way street. We've lived up to our obligations and commitments. Why can't you?

Yikes! Where is your realistic business sense? It would be great, but who could afford those expenditures, and how would that possibly fly with any Board of Directors with half a brain?

The updates to the BlackBerry PlayBook Could be sold to the board of directors as continued support of their enterprise clients. The board of directors are equally culpable for the precarious situation in which the company and the brand are at present. The shareholders don't seem to hold anyone accountable.

Posted via CB10

I've been pretty happy with the free apps and accessories... and most of all, software updates.

Inichols, you hit the nail on the head. No loyalty, typical corporate talk, we are all fools for the support we give this company. I would NEVER buy another tablet from BB, probobly never another phone either.

It should have been handled differently.

I assume they are. That's why they dont want to waste time and money any more on a device that only under few hundred thousand devices active and most of the owners do not have a Blackberry phone to play with it.

I would assume may be close one hundred thousand customers who use playbook bridge with BB10 device. I do not see a reason to work on Bridge improvements, in business prospective. Remember, Playbook is 3 years old.

BlackBerry Bridge is all but useless with BlackBerry 10 smartphones. The development team can't even deliver fully functional BlackBerry Bridge. How difficult can it be to implement? It is 100% software on top of the Bluetooth channel.

Posted via CB10

I would argue that making the PlayBook an I/O device would at the very least sell some BB10 devices. Playbooks are so cheap nowadays that it would conceivable that some would buy both together for the purpose.

Now the fact that the Playbook is no longer being sold through retail channels and no active marketing of the new feature would be done, it's not a guarantee it would significantly affect sales but I really don't think implementing such a app would be all that difficult.

Too bad there's no way for third party developers to do it.

Posted via CB10

Still using my 3 year old 32G PlayBook. My Z has taken a lot of the load off it though. Miss the BBOS bridge functionality as does everyone else who moved to the BB10 OS. The PlayBook UI is superior in many ways to that of BB10. The multitasking is unmatched. I'll continue to use my PlayBook until it no longer boots up. Pretty amazing that my PlayBook has run pretty much 24/7 for three straight years. Only time it has ever been shut down is for reboots or battery drain. Swipe to on. Still love it.

I have the latest Nexus 7, Galaxy Tab 2 and a PlayBook. And frankly I use PlayBook the most. And I love how it performs. It suits my needs completely. It saddens me to hear about PlayBook being officially dead now.

What a great loss!

I said this when it came out. Wtf. I always thought I could use my pb as a bigger screen to my phone. Nope. Sounds so stupid to me. If I could have done that I'm sure my friends and I would still be using our play books.

Posted via CB10

I could live and let die more easily, except for the small digs: They're also expunging the memory of PlayBook from BB10 in the sense that Contacts app no longer has a field for PlayBook Video Chat, only BBM PIN -- and it does not work the same, it will make you invite them to BBM instead (which they can't accept) instead of knowing it should be video-chat only because it's a PlayBook (they can't tell from the PIN? I suspect they can.) I'm afraid to edit any such contact for fear of losing the existing field.

BlackBerry give us the tools to add on to the playbook and fix what needs to be fixed! We can have a community that help provide updates just like isohunt was resurrected

Wow. The Playbook is even deader than the HP TouchPad. Even the TouchPad has CyanogenMod which allows you to install Android and OpenMobile ACL which enables Android apps on webOS.

Which is exactly what I'm doing with my 32GB HP TouchPad - running CyanogenMOD for the last two years. So why can't BB unlock the bootloader and allow the open-source community to port Android or Ubuntu Touch or Linux onto the PlayBook? I bought my 64GB PlayBook at a reduced price but I would love to run an alternative OS.

"The bigger *harsh* reality, is why would they want to? This would be an investment that would result in no more new PlayBook sales and no new income to the company."

But it begs the question. How many customers would have stayed with BB, instead of jumping ship? Sure, it wouldn't bring in direct revenue, but it probably would have prevented millions in lost revenue. I know the PB disaster a HUGE factor in what pushed me to Android.

"The bigger *harsh* reality, is why would they want to? This would be an investment that would result in no more new PlayBook sales and no new income to the company."

Simply put the current BlackBerry PlayBook with on-going support (real support not dribs and drabs) could have been the test platform for the next generation BlackBerry tablet just as it was the basis for BlackBerry OS 10 and the BlackBerry 10 smartphones. Shame on BlackBerry. Shame on John Chen. I wonder if he is related to that shady California state senator arrested for arm trafficking?

Agreed with Xader. I would've been a lot more inclined to pick up a BB10 phone if the PB got some love (not necessarily a BB10 upgrade, but something that brought it up to snuff). BB's investment likely would've paid off in that they'd retain a very loyal fanbase.

Still love my PB, but I won't be sticking with BB for future purchases.

That's a secure bootloader for you!

Posted via CB10 on Z30 STA100-2 / on O2 UK - Activated on BES10.2.1

"Still love my PB, but I won't be sticking with BB for future purchases."

Unfortunately, this is my attitude in light of the treatment the loyal BlackBerry users have received pretty much from April 19, 2011.

I think the idea of stripping a PlayBook down to a miracast device would be awesome!

Can someone write that app now?!?

I totally agree that having a larger "dumb" screen is still desirable. I'm sure that would take very little in the form of memory and cpu, and the PlayBook has enough of both to do the job.

C'mon BlackBerry, one last update. Rip out pbos and make the PlayBook a bridge only video extension!

(too bad it'll never happen)

BRON: a cron-like scheduler for BlackBerry 10.

Hey Kevin, what do you think about this, get the best BlackBerry PlayBook bridge software guy permission to make an app the this guy is looking for in his spare time. Then charge for the app, allow him to profit, while he kicks back to the house. I could be wrong but at $2-3.00 US price point might be financially worth the time and investment.

Posted via CB10

This imho is the biggest blunder in BB history. What was the rush to release the product with no email, calender or BBM capabilities and a pathetic app store. They invested over 1 billion on developing this, not incuding write downs, and for what???
6-8 months of waiting till it was complete properly and I gurantee things would have been much different for BB and the playbook. It had huge potential, and they flat out blew it.
Hindsight is always 20/20 but man on man.. what could have been.

It is clear that with the PlayBooks "2nd death" their word means very little to even their fans now. They made a lot of promises and delivered on very few. I understand their business decision and I'm sure they'll understand my personal decision when I finally decide to leave and take my 6 other family members with me, heck I'm the one keeping them with BlackBerry.

The shame is the BB10 has so much potential, but they can't afford to see more users depart.

From now on, they will have to deliver first, forget the promises.

Posted via CB10

In this day and age where the standard device lifespan is two years, it did okay.
I know one day BlackBerry will create a new business grade tablet.
I will continue to use mine until the red light of life, blinks no more.

Posted via CB10

I've been saying that Foxconn should make any future tablets.

There isn't any one outstanding tablet on the market at the moment without any flaws.

If BlackBerry is so hung up on Enterprise, build one for Enterprise users only. That way you can gauge the feedback before development for the consumer market.

Build for Beta testers in Enterprise with 10.2 OS

Build less devices but better quality ones at competitive prices .

That's how you save money

I'm sure Foxconn would jump at the chance.

Posted via CB10

"Build less devices but better quality ones, at competitive prices"

Without the economics of scale, how do you think BlackBerry or Foxconn even profit from this?

Even with Foxconn's massive inventory of components, they are ultimately here to make money and would be unlikely to agree to building a device that expected to sell less, and with small profit per device.

Posted via CB10

I wonder how many downloads there were, and after how many hours!
This gives an idea how many people still use their playbook. and care for updates!

I think it is time the Playbook gets a PIN-based unlock generating site for those that want to void whatever can be voided.

Kinda sux to see the PlayBook not being supported anymore. I don't know, but my family and I still uses it on a daily basis and will continue to use it until..... who knows....

I bought the PlayBook three years a go. It's just time to let go of this great machine.

Just because it has been a three year old?

Posted via CB10 | STL100-2 | Waiting for the mighty Squircle to return.

It's been said in other posts by people who also own other tablets.
The PB has a great UI, can multi-task and has great sound.
I recently saw a commercial for one of the Androids, bragging on how they could do two things at once. That's old news. The PB has been doing more than two things at once for 3 years!!! So much for saying it's old technology.

Why not use the existing PB customer base, through software updates, to try out new things. Like making the Bridge more functional. Then pass those enhancements on to a more powerful tablet or phone? A built in beta test market of thousands.

Doubt it will happen, but got it off my chest anyway.

Posted via CB10

It really is too bad that the BlackBerry PlayBook has come to the end of its life. I still have a PlayBook that my buddy gave to me a few years ago for free. It was his first tablet, but eventually replaced it with an iPad. I still use the PlayBook from time to time and when paired with my Z30 it works well as I can browse the Internet and make and receive text messages. I wish the PlayBook just had a little more speed and processing power to it as often it seems like you have to wait a second or so for acknowledgement that a key press has been registered by the device.

Posted via the Z30 on CB10

Bring mirrorlink to the PlayBook. OTA or wired, I don't care.
We talked about that (was then DLNA + BT) for months ... uhh ... years.
Mister Chen, if you're looking a way to make a few million users happy ...

I would love to see the PB become a Miracast machine as well. I could do everything I can do with my phone on the bigger screen which would be perfect!

I won't hold my breath on anything else though. I'll keep using mine until the bitter end or until a Z30 finds its way into my hands.

Posted via CB10

At the very least, full Bridge functionality for BB10 devices would be nice.

I'm seriously thinking about getting a Bold 9930 to have as a backup/secondary handset for the Bridge features alone.

Posted from my Z30 via CB10.

Will somebody please start a petition to get John Chen the hell out of BlackBerry before it's too late?

I used my almighty Z30 to create this CrackBerry madness!

Don't you run from me Kevin! I will track you down in whichever forum you dash to, Stop with the Playbook funerals around Crackberry its not doing any good . My 64g Playbook works better than it was working yesterday! Why are you so hell bent on depressing Playbook Owners by jumping from one Playbook funeral thread to another! I personally have purchased 5 playbooks and sent some to South America , my little girl loves the 16g and I have a 64g which is still fine and I am not pissed off at Blackberry for all these non news that are being pushed now. I am more pissed at the reactions and the after thoughts of these reactions that are clearly doing more harm than good . I love bb bridge and its uniqueness , clearly unparalleled but it is what it is let it go stop trying to pander to the attractiveness of the sensationalism of the Playbook Death and Funeral!

It's sad to hear this terrible news. I've never owned a tablet other than my PlayBook so this news really hits home.

I'll use it until it dies!

Posted using the best phone ever, the Z30!

This is killing me. After pulling my Z10 out of the drawer and updating with 10.2 I am crazy about Blackberry now, so much so that I wanted to get a Z30 unlocked so I could use it on AT&T. Went to to order and see "Out of Stock". Called and they said they wouldn't have any more until April 14 (at 7am!). Really happy for BB but bummed for me.

After my z10 contract is up. My next phone is going to be one with a matching tablet solution. BlackBerry wake up!!!!! You already missed the consumer boat; now you are going to miss the enterprise boat.

I loved the concept the one member had showing a tablet that would dock a me, that would be an inexpensive way for BB10 users to upgrade size instantly. Developing countries that Foxconn is targeting, would eat up such a device for the Z3!

Posted via CB10

I don't get where people talk about this being a 3 year old tablet. PB OS 2 didn't even come out until 2012, and although the tablet was available before then it arguably wasn't released as a complete product. There are still so many things lacking today; no way to sync multiple google calendars (there used to be a work around but it no longer works), no bbm, no bb10 app compatibility, the list goes on. I can't even launch a video chat with it from my BB10 phone. Pretty sad it that it had so much promise that was never realized.

All it really accomplished was turning a large group of blackberry die hards into disgruntled former blackberry customers who learned their lesson not to deal with the company in the future. That was it's true legacy.

At least it was consistent - a failure from launch to death.

I like your take on this, and agree on the disgruntled aspect of the playbook adoption

Posted via CB10

2speedy, very well said. It isn't just the present news, it's the whole project, beginning to death, huge cluster f@*k. And yes, it is pissing off many of the faithful.

It is an amazing feat, BB and Chen are attempting to destroy the remaining .5% market share left active.

Chen, good job!

Guess BlackBerry really don't care about the loyal fools that paid 5-700$ bucks when it first came out. I am not stupid I know it failed but it's failed because of poor BlackBerry management team not because of the product. My father wanted the HTC M8 I took him to AT&T and compared it to my Z30 even I was truly impressed on how much better the Z30 speakers and camera was and even the Z browser kills it. My point? No marketing no carriers carry it in the USA except VZ.
Look they want sales of their phones but carriers are starting one by one stopping the sale of BlackBerry phones to consumers.
I love my Z30 but if BlackBerry don't start helping themselves we maybe in trouble.

Posted via CB10

Sad day but my PlayBook will live on. I still use it for browsing, music, email, etc. Actually my work has just setup 4-5 playbooks this week to use for remote server access to fill out invoices in the field. Bridged to my old curve or my new z10 its still a functional tool for me. I would still consider a BlackBerry tablet but only if its executed properly this time.

Posted via CB10

If the PB is dead to Chen, then BB needs to open the platform for us to make this happen ourselves.

The PB may be a considered a niche product by some, but it's still got potential -- especially in the above described manner and double-especially for us Q10 users with the smaller screen!

I'd be willing to kick in $25 to $50 upfront to a Kickstarter to fund a handful of CB developers to spend 6 months to make this "CB10 Mirror" app happen. (And probably more later, as an app purchase, once I got hands-on or at least an extensive video demo for the finish product.)

I can't possibly be the only one who'd be willing to throw in some green to help make this happen.

5,632 CB users answered the survey that they still use their PB.

5,632 x $25 contribution per person = $ 140,800 in funding

That's nothing to sneeze at.

If BB doesn't want to develop for it anymore, let someone else! Make those CB "someone elses" sign an NDA if they must, but if people want to make it happen what harm is there to BB to just LET is make it happen?

(Hell, BB's probably got to have at least one box in a warehouse somewhere, full of unsold PBs. With a produced app like this they could probably run a special CB clearance sale to established BB10 users and dump them at $50 a pop as an external screen to anyone who doesn't already own a PB. Seems like win-win to BB to me, so what's their excuse for saying "no"?)

I vote for a new CB survey about who'd be willing to throw some cash at this, and how much.

I've already cast my vote: "Yes, with an initial contribution of $50"

Dollars make things happen.

I was all set to buy a Z10 until I found out the Playbook bridge app was hobbled on BB10...I decided to stay with my 9900 until the bridge app was repaired as I use my Playbook daily. I'm disappointed that the fix won't happen, but both tools work perfectly together which leaves me without a compelling reason to upgrade...My guess is I'm not the only Playbook owner who's decided to hang onto their current set-up for the same reason.

+1. I've also found a Youtube vid on how to replace my PB battery when it finally dies. Love my PB.

Started to write hoping and it came out moping (which is appropriate)...
Hoping this is an April fools joke.
If previous RIM->BlackBerry execs had made better decisions, the PlayBook could be more popular than the "cheap" 7" tablets on the market these days

Well I'm just hoping that the enterprise consumers are communicating that they need a tablet to go with BlackBerry devices then maybe Chen and his team will listen.

Posted via CB10

I said it before and will say it again: I really miss the swipe functions of the Playbook on my new Nexus 7 2013! They (BlackBerry) were on to something...which is why I love my Q10, i would just LOVE a big screen BlackBerry companion!

Posted via CB10

I think what keeps my emotions running so high about the PB story is knowing what might have been. So much innovative brilliance in those little puppies. Even tho some of the specs now lag behind 3 years later, there is still so much functionality there. But the world never knew about it. There lies the rub.

I just wish that they would open source the PB OS. I can understand the business decision regarding not continuing to support the platform (though I think the decision stinks) but it would be nice if the community could provide updates that the company is unwilling to. Having said that, I also realize that there is probably too much intellectual property in there for them to feel comfortable releasing it as an open source offering. I still would like to see it happen.

I dunno, but I still use my PB every night in bed to watch YouTube videos, do some email and browsing, and read the CB Forums. I posted a thread here earlier about how much I love the stereo sound of the PB's speakers, even compared to any of the iPads. They are awesome! Unfortunately the apps that are available are awful, and worst part is that most of them are not free.

I will continue to use this for these purposes, I'm not concerned about the Bridge issue because I use it at home only and on my WiFi network. But I agree that it is a heavy device and a missed opportunity for RIM.

P.S. I use Kobo, actually I bought a Kobo eReader but truth be told, the Kobo PlayBook app is awesome, and I find I use it almost nightly.

It's kind of a better if BB will really focus on it's BB10 devices and making them better, but with the way things are on the BB10 hardware/releases/etc especially in USA, one of the largest markets in the world, this won't make much of a difference to BBRY.

I still travel with my PlayBook. I don't use it very much anymore, but I like having it in case I have time to watch a movie (the screen size is perfect for personal entertainment).

My wife uses her PlayBook at night in bed to surf the net. Again, the screen size is good & its much more comfortable than using a laptop in bed.

Our kids borrow them frequently to play games.

Both devices still work well for the limited use cases above. They're both in perfect condition. Official support or not, I'll hold onto the PlayBook's for the foreseeable future.

I do hope BlackBerry releases a new tablet when the company turns around. They really got it right with the PlayBook in my opinion. It is a great device. A 2nd generation would be awesome.

For what it's worth, I have an old iPad that barely gets used in my house. Just too darn slow now...

Posted via CB10 from my Z30.

At the time the PB came out, it was pretty awesome even though it had very little applications and a ton of bugs. Now that I have a z30, I basically don't use my PlayBook for anything anymore other than for some gaming and for taking notes (even though sometimes I just hook up the BlackBerry blue tooth keyboard to my z30). All in all, the PlayBook was definitely rushed and lots went wrong in the execution. Still love it though. Use it as my car's stereo system with the BlackBerry music gateway :)

Posted via CB10

I still use mine on a daily basis for work but also for the kids while driving.

The work part of the PlayBook works well for me. I have manuals and sales literature stored on my Z10 and on Dropbox. Plus I also have documents stored on the server at the office. When i'm at a clients location, I have the capability of using the z10 to gain access to all the documents on Dropbox, office pc via link or memory card. Then I just open them on the PlayBook and get to work. I'm also able to login to our secured website from the PlayBook using the Tether.. works well.

Also.. during long drives, the kids or my wife can surf the web on it. Keeps the kids quite and entertained. Best thing. I don't need a secondary data plan

Posted via CB10

Love my PlayBook but have absolutley no confidence in any future BlackBerry Tablet style devices. The reason the PlayBook failed is because of poor leadership. Blackberry stating that killing the PlayBook makes business sense?! If you quit funding it long enough sure it makes.

The Blackberry Developer community could build a mirror app (Mirror to Phone) that enables that companion functionality. Sell it at an affordable price and there you go.

Or BlackBerry can make a BB10 powered 7" and 10" tablet with Foxconn

Posted via CB10

I do think that BlackBerry should look at launching a new tablet but it can't be called the PlayBook. The name alone will stop the sales from progressing because of all the bad press. It needs to be a new size (8 or 10 inch) and new name.

If you look at the uses of the Ipad in business, they use it for many functions, it has replaced the clipboard and forms with electronic forms that send data directly to a server. No more filling out forms so someone else has to input them into a database.

With the machine to machine technology that is starting to progress in this technology sector, A secure tablet that can be used in the corporate world to function as a replacement to the clipboard plus also replace a laptop is needed.

Let look at what's out there now and what BlackBerry is missing out on.

1: airlines : all manuals are going on tablets. Air Canada is promoting how well bb10 works but is getting Ipad for the flight crews.

2: Hospitals and nursing homes: they now use an Ipad to walk around to each room to see what your meal selection is. The patients select what they want and it's Sent directly to the kitchen. The nurses also bring the med cart from room to room to see what each patient needs for meds. The nurse inputs the patient name. A picture of the patient pops up with a list of medication.

3: service techs: the Ipad is now being used to have the techs dispatched work orders and have clients sign off that they are completed.

These are just 3 examples of what BlackBerry and the BES system should be looking at doing to expand the BlackBerry profile.

Posted via CB10

We'll keep using ours until the next one from BlackBerry. My personal Playbook gets exercised every day.

I still love my 64 GB wifi playbook, it gets used almost daily and I'm ok with the lack of support going forward as I've easily gotten my money worth. I will just have to cherish it even more!

 BlackBerry Q10 

My biggest electronic purchase regret was the Playbook. I had high hopes for it to be something wonderful and after a few months it felt dated and old.

It's been on a shelf now for a year or so untouched and this news is not surprising to say the least.

I am still heavy on usage with my Q10 and Z10 but I do think if they don't keep pumping out much needed upgrades then we will be seeing a headline in 6-8 months that is similar to the brand itself and not just a one off product.

Posted via CB10

So now we have 3 keyboard devices promised, and the low cost Z3, but we seem to have lost the high end touch only device, and the playbook EOL announcement. ON top of this, the BBOS7 devices have been resurrected. It appears that Mr. Chen is attempting to return BlackBerry back to the pre BB10 era. Talk about a niche of a niche company and market. And I LIKE BlackBerry.

I'm going to get a few more of them. They still work great for me. They are also cheap from ebay too.

Posted via CB10

I love my Q10, but the PlayBook has sustained me for years. We have two. Although saddened by the announcement, I know that everything dies.

A lot of great ideas here on the usefulness of the PlayBook. In fact, the first one I saw was used as a large screen during a sales presentation.

I sincerely wish that BlackBerry has learned from this. After the current plan for BlackBerry is well on the way to being successful, we can hope for a PlayBook II.

Posted via CB10

The problem of blackberry is not the hardware it is the software and appstore....blackberry needs to go to microsoft or android finish....and do nice phones with nice look with metal body ( htc, apple,)....i buy q blackberry i buy z and now after more then 6 years i work with an old lumia 800 nokia....because viber dont support os10.... Things like this make me and many others user engree....sorry for my english...i wish to go back to blackberry im ready ...

The unfortunate thing is that BlackBerry has fumbled the PlayBook device from the beginning. I still use mine everyday even though it has fallen behind the times for want of attention by BlackBerry. It is sad that the true potential of PB was never realized. It was as though everything which should not be done with handling the launching, marketing and supporting of a new device was done. It is a shame because the PB is a great device. Although I am a dyed-in-the-wool BlackBerry user, I will have to take a wait and see stance should a new BlackBerry tablet be produced. If it follows the same route as the PlayBook, then why bother investing in a device that lacks support and longevity.

Posted via CB10

I received my PlayBook as UK pre order fathers day gift from my wife and daughter, and yes the disappointment with the lack of software support and OS updates still doesn't change the fact that this was one of the best manufactured tablets ever made.

Yes it's a shame that there will be no more official support but who's to say that someone couldn't tinker with a support app which allows even more out of it.

Mine gets used practically everyday without any issues and I still love it just the same
Also the official keyboard case which is now quite rare

Posted via CB10

Gives you some perspective on how the company was being run if lazaridis thought the going rate for a "Window to a BlackBerry phone" was upwards of $600

Posted via CB10

I still want to know why they took features away from the Playbook that they once had. It's less functional now than when I first bought it.

BB Proud

I contend that a tablet is necessary for BlackBerry. Simple. Z30 is not enough to do the software justice. To me it is obvious. BlackBerry must do it and soon. Heins may right that un 5 years a tablet is unnecessary. But this market is one year at a time.

Posted via CB10

I still use mine for business everyday. I keep it as a remote desktop, and RDP device, as well as a personal entertainment device for flights. It also houses most of my service manuals for hardware, as well as a lot of my overall documentation.

For me, the only things it really lacks are printing and a less kludgy keyboard, but other than that it does everything I needed it to when I bought it and has been a great investment for my business. Most days the laptop just stays in the car, or back in the office since I have everything I need with me with the PlayBook.

I still love my playbook and I am finding new ways to make it useful. The UI is still advance compared to iOS7. I like the idea of using the Playbook as a client device to access BlackBerry10 devices in a visualisation service. Would make for a nice project.

Posted via CB10

Heins had no clue when he implied tablets would be irrelevant. PC and laptop sales are both losing ground to tablets.

But only fools would ever trust a Blackberry tablet again. Or I should say, trust Blackberry to properly launch and support a tablet. BB needs a tablet to stay relevant and competitive, but it cannot ever earn back the trust it has lost.

Again...I use BOTH of my PBs DAILY. I use them in the exact way that "the emailer" (and the presentation guy), use them. They're still very powerful tools for both work and play.

I would also agree that, were they to market the interplay capabilities of the PB and BlackBerry10 hand helds, they might make a little more money by selling more of each, and the demonstration of this functionality could very well increase BlackBerry's user base.

I'm a die hard BlackBerry user. I go balls out for BlackBerry in conversation about BlackBerry. If I had a choice in the matter, the one thing I'd like to see most is continued, and better, compatability between my BlackBerry phone and tablets.

My wishes are in sync with many other BlackBerry users' in regards to feeling betrayed, but I'm also more of a realist. Business is business. That said...I still believe that BlackBerry owes it's faithful a great debt for, not only our willingness to stand by the brand, but also for weathering the unsavory comments, and even outright ridicule that we often are subjected to.

It's gotten personal, BlackBerry.

Posted via CB10

So why can't someone develop an app that will do just that - act as a large screen extension of our BlackBerry phones? Is it really that difficult or even possible? Surely a bridge style app for the phone and one for the playbook? This seems a great idea.

Posted with the brilliance of my Z10 

Mine still rocks, still goes to work everyday, but I am using a dell venue 8 pro as well for my windows needs. My playbook will be a great tablet until it dies!!

I have never really believed in the whole tablet movement. I did purchase the PlayBook but found myself just watching movies and listening to music on it. When I needed to get real work done I've always reached for the 13 inch laptop. As long as my PlayBook can still play media I'm cool with it. I will never purchase another tablet I don't care who makes it. My Z30 does all if I need a quick fix for music or a movie. Sorry to see it go but....oh well. Teknision(All Mix No Talk)Podcast

What isn't explained is how blackberry could have possibly thought the PlayBook was worth $500 at launch? Was their arrogance really that great?

Posted via CB10

Well, business is business and mine is walking away from BlackBerry now.

For the small investment it would have taken to unlock the PlayBook and keep my loyalty. I'm disappointed. Having used BlackBerry for the last 7 years (currently Z10) I will be joining the windows 8 brigade with a Surface 2 from June.

Farewell comrades.

Posted via CB10

this is what drives me crazy about BB. they have there hands in to many places. And not the right ones. BB10 should all ready be on the back burner and they should be getting ready to release BB11. and shop making so many device's. who cares about the bold 9900 move on. They should make a z10 z30 and q10 and that's it. no more. More isn't always best sometime less is. and in a few months they should release a z11 z31 and q11. improve speed, camera, battery and that's it. all the money they waste on all these other phones they could build a kick ass playbook II -7" and 10"

I like the idea by Lazaridis/Jsolts, but I don't want it to happen now if there is no return on the investment. Focus is on growth...Even as a PlayBook owner myself.

Aka S.Jizzle Z30STA100-5/

As many others, I really like the bridge function of the Playbook. I would like to see a bridge app for Android tablets.

I was hoping this was an April's fool joke of some kind....*single tear drop*

Posted via the Android CrackBerry App!

I was actually considering buying a PB recently, but if this is the case, is it still worth it?

I'm eager to link it to my 9800 but I'm considering buying a Q10 and, if I understood correctly, it doesn't work so well on BB10.

I find it sad that BlackBerry failed at properly launching the BlackBerry tablet, then failed at properly launching the Z10, Q10 and now the Z30. Now the tablet is dead!
I think BlackBerry 10 phones are amazing and the Z30 is the best phone on the market today! Many reading my comment agree?
I hope Mr Chen realizes he has the best phones on the market, turns around the the company to a winning attitude and finally can change the poor public perception BlackBerry currently has.

Posted via CB10

Well, I still can use it for browsing websites and video chat with the family. My son will use his to connect to the internet through BB bridge for games / youtube when traveling. Until it breaks I am going to keep using it.

Honestly, to me, the playbook isn't "dead". Not supported anymore, but for one thing, it still works! I'm using it now! (First getting it updated that is) I'll be loading it up with some good games too, besides what is already on it. :)

The Playbook still streams from the Sirius/XM online player better than my Z10. It's easier to navigate with the bigger screen and sounds better as well. So if the Playbook is resigned to be just an online media player so be it. At least until a newer flash or other protocol the Playbook does not have is required.

"April Fools" now watch them drop a bb10 miracast tomorrow now that everyone has aired their frustrations.

Posted via CB10

Aw well, hopefully we will see a QNX type OS on some other tablet. Until then ,on to an android I go.

Posted via CB10

Totally agree with the forum user Jsolts and Kevin - another lost Opportunity for BlackBerry that they never click probably because the team that did os 10 seemed total strangers of BlackBerry os 7 customs and blind/ inept upper management who did not had the proper senior skills to guide the development in the right direction. I still occasionally use the playbook with or without Q10...

Another thing I never figured out-why they never emulated os 7 under os 10 in a virtual machine. They do the same thing with android pretty much. Why not your own bb7? That would have allow access to certain features and software that even today they lack...but who knows???

If they keep updating the bridge then the PlayBook may not be quite so redundant...


When bridged, in playbook on a bbm, send or receive a message with an email address if you don't already have a message containing one, click on the blue hyper link of that email....

OMG - it's the hub (obviously work in progress) on the playbook!

Posted via CB10

As John S. Chen knows this CB community is happy to try new PB leaks. Rather than dropping the ball on us keep a small PB development team alive and tinker around with some wish list items till 80% of us are happy. I'm sure BlackBerry will learn a lot from the feedback.

 How can BlackBerry not see the potential to engage such willing guinea pigs? ? ?

Do the 80/20 rule and honor loyalty. Keep us PB users involved in pushing new software versions as leaks. The hardware is still good; 24/7 for 2 years and OS updated today! ! ! 

John S. Chen, please, work with this CB forum and tell us how things are coming along as a small PB team works , say on PB BBM standalone as a first goal. Then tackle the next wish voted for by this community.

Killing a small PB development team will not cause the share price to go up or save the company . Supporting loyalty not either but if BlackBerry wants to survive it will be a bigger asset than the money you saved. Just call it an April fool joke  like this news: Snowden dishes BlackBerry's Secrets In New Report. (?). . .:)

Posted via CB10

just add native bbm on our beloved playbook. just native bbm. please....... again how come android and ios got bbm client and non on our beloved playbook. why why why

This has always baffled me.... I mean there might be some technical difficulty that prevented this, but it still looks ridiculous either way.

Catering to even the gingerbread running android devices (2.3) whilst leaving the playbook to fend for itself, meanwhile these older devices may have been released around the same time as the playbook

Weird indeed.

Posted via CB10

I totally agree with the original article and the desire to have the PB merely be an I/O device for a BB handset.

I really enjoyed connecting my Bold to my PB when I got home via the bridge and surfing the web, doing email, responding to text messages, viewing media, and working with the core productivity apps, tasks, calendar, etc. It was definitely a fun and productive pairing of devices.

I still use my PB for music, movies, games and occasionally for email. I'm sad the PB is never going to get BB10 as I still had hope. It's a great representation of BB's build quality and I love the form factor of it.

Looks like I'm going to have to make do with a new Z30 instead! :)

Via CB10 & Z10 or Q10

Maybe they should transition to another BB10 ready Playbook before they kill off the line. Octacore, 7" screen with thinner swipe border. Also they should sell a click on keyboard....but not like the crappy Typo rip-off.

Posted via CB10

I've owned two. The first was a 32gb LTE version that unfortunately got scmucked. But now I have just the typical 64gb wifi unit. I keep all my codes and some important files on it as well as being my mini music player. Still a decent pce of hardware.

Bummer though to hear - but understand the reasoning. Not sure what I'll end up doing in the end when its a tossup between a Z30 or Q20.

Via what's really, a BOLD X....on X.II.I

Interestingly, last month I bought 3 Blackberry Playbooks. Yes I did, from the resale market. The price is just so attractive for the purposes I have in mind. Here's the result:

32GB Playbook 4G/LTE (with the 1.5GHz CPU) - I loaded in my vast music library to become mobile music player. I installed Neutron audiophile music app ($5) and the sound is the very best in the tablet market. This is because the Playbook uses a high-performance Wolfson DAC chip. Playbook big batteries allows it to drive audiophile headphones with ease, something no smartphone can do (without draining out fast). The surprise is there are still quite a bit of very useful free apps in BB World. For a bit more than $100 I got myself the world's best portable music player with a large screen and a package of useful apps thrown in for free. Oh yes, when I connect it to a Bluetooth loudspeaker, the sound is even more wonderful. One heck of a deal.

I like the Playbook as music player so much, I bought another one in the used market, a 64G version. This works a both video and music player on-the-go and in-house, because it has a full HDMI connection. I connect it directly to my big TV and via the AV amp to play video - the quality is outstanding. The Playbook can play full HD video up to 15Mbps bitrate - no other same size tablet can match. The video quality matches that of a full Windows laptop using a Core i5 - quite an achievement.

Finally I bought a third Playbook in the used market for a song. It's camera has failed but no matter. I use it solely as a beautiful clock in my living room. No problem finding a free clock app in BB World. Bought a Playbook Rapid Charging stand to hold it up and keep it in charged. For the $50 I paid for it, it is the world's best LCD clock. But of course, I also installed weather apps for the occasional use. It just sit therefore running 24x7 nonstop and I am so happy.

The Playbook is competently designed, and its multitasking BB10 OS is so refreshing compared to the hassle of Android and iOS. Which makes the screw-ups in other departments so sad. Nevertheless, the second-hand market makes my day.

All I need from BlackBerry for my PlayBook 64G is Chinese display and Chinese input. I think that will be enough for me to make my PlayBook to ultimate useage.

Difficult to execute? How about actually executing something. BlackBerry has yet to execute something as they state

Posted via CB10


Your guys comments mimicking most of our thoughts, but what was not discussed was that if BlackBerry ever properly bridged the bb10 devices, making the PlayBook a 'dumb' device, how would one continue to use the legacy gear for bridging???

Kevin, Jsots nailed it. I happily used mine in exactly the same ways. If the bridge could be brought back to full functionality, I would have nothing to complain about.

Posted via CB10

Nevermind competing platforms getting BBM first, more the fact that they actually got it. PB development never even got far enough along to bring BBM to the platform. Pretty sad. Funny how RIM gave away Dev alpha devices, but we had to pay for our playbooks...

A fitting end for a half-baked idea in the first place. It's like the famous musician who, based on past success, thinks that their every burp is a work of art. The whole Playbook concept, in my view, was 1) Doomed from the get-go and 2) Had much worse effects on the company than just the waste of resources - it demonstrated to the rest of the world just how badly BlackBerry had gone astray, lost its identity and just plain taken its eye off the ball. Here's to hoping they can manage to get back to doing one thing and doing it well - just concentrate on producing devices that work - that means battery life, an OS that doesn't confuse, more memory and storage capacity that what we need, and dependable hardware. GO!

The Playbook was my first and only tablet. I've tried many others but none was so compelling and useful as the BlackBerry tablet. It was it that made me a BlackBerry fan! So it's going to be sad the day mine doesn't work anymore. I just hope it's not soon.

I gave mine to my 12 year old son about 2 years ago and he still uses it on a daily basis. Mostly it's just a YouTube viewer for him, but he does play some games and listens to music. It's a shame that it never lived up to the potential that it had. Still to this day it's the best sounding tablet I've ever seen.

I have 2 iPads, a Nexus 7 and a Surface, but I think the PlayBook still gets more use than any of them.

I've used a variety of tablets at work, and have a PB at home. In terms of usability the PB is top notch. If you could stretch is to 10 or 12 inch, and add a stylus for notes, I would buy it again. Perhaps PB2 is coming :)

I loved my Playbook until I changed phone. I had a BlackBerry bold 9700 linked to my PB which was something nice! the second I bought an android phones, the love between me and my pb was dead! too bad! was a pleasure anyway! never regretted it!

Posted via CB10

PlayBook is still up and running as well as the day I opened it! I still love mine and is used daily! I'm not into Apple products except the Ipod! That was Apples best product! BlackBerry's for me!

Posted via CB10

I think the Playbook was poorly marketed and therefore poorly understood. Only those who spent some time immersing in it understood it's value. But it's value was diminished in relation to the leaps and bounds made by android and apple products. I confess that I use mine daily, but anytime now I'll drop a couple of hundred dollars on an android tablet and never look back.

All of which is fitting since, in truth, BlackBerry abandoned it long, long ago.

Posted via CB10