Hands on with the new Android Player in PlayBook OS 2.1

Apps now run in their own window!

By DJ Reyes on 4 Oct 2012 01:46 pm EDT

One of the cool things from PlayBook OS 2.0 was that it brought about the ability to run Android apps on the BlackBerry PlayBook. However, it got quite annoying if you needed to run a few Android ported apps at the same time as they would all run in the same window, making it hard for you to jump between them. With BlackBerry PlayBook OS 2.1 dropping yesterday, the update now allows for Android apps to run in their own window, making it a lot easier to go between them if you needed to.

Now that the apps open in a new their own window, you will no longer see all the previously opened ones along the bottom bar. You can still swipe left or right from the center of the bottom bezel to go back with the Android apps.

If you haven't already, get your PlayBook update to v2.1 now. Don't forget, BlackBerry Bridge was also updated bringing about a few cool features too.

Check out the video above for a quick demo of the Android apps running in their own window.

Reader comments

Hands on with the new Android Player in PlayBook OS 2.1


in app world. no real way to filter them by what code they were written in...

hmm That could be a cool App World filter. source code ;)

RIM has to maximize features as they are putting all their energies in BB10 and little else. 2.1 was a nice treat.
Tablets are incredible

OCD can be a pain in the ass. Make sure you wash your hands before touching your Playbook so you don't get finger prints on the screen. Also keep a soft lint free cloth to wipe down your Playbook after each use, specially the screen. It freaks me out big time to see a fingerprint on my Playbook screen :-)
Tablets are incredible

Is it just me, or does anyone else find it annoying when you text someone from the Bridged Playbook and receive response with the persons +phone number as a separate text?
Or am I the only person experiencing this?

For everyone that doesn't know. Many android apps require the back button key.

there are two way to do this on the PlayBook.

Swipe down from the top bezel to gain access to menus and the "buttom bar", flick the switch on the bottom right and have the bottom bar always on. (with access to the back button found on the bottom left)


(i prefer this)

simply swipe at an angle going from right to left from under the bottom bezel up into the screen like like a backslash \ and that is like hitting the back button

... so, ahm ... the first, most obvious thought that popped into my head when reading this was: ...

"Android Apps on Playbook: => Skype=Google (ergo Android) app => Freakishly do-able?"

Anyone tried it - successfully? ... "Yes?" ... "No?"

Hi everyone
I have installed the new OS 2.1 and the Android apps run not in their own window only a few, for example kindle app run through the android loader....Can someone tell me why?? thx

That is all well and good but what do you do when your UK 64GB will not update, I've reset to factory settings switched on gone to update software goes all the way through install until 98% then says update unsuccesful, i've tried via desktop aswell its just looping with the same error message, a bricked unit great any ideas would be appreciated :-(

I had the same problem. Eventually solved yesterday by using a friend's wifi...after 8 failures at home it worked first time.

Please tell me step by step how to load kindle on playbook and if very can use Skype on playbook now

Use someone's android tablet, download and install skype, in that options, move it to the SD card and then transfer it to the playbook from the SD card using dingleberry after converting it to .bar. Done and done. There are guides to sideloading, run a search.

Now if those apps don't work, it was worth a try.

Is it just me, or is there not a single Blackberry spokesperson that can sell what blackberry can offer? Or maybe that there's nothing to offer is the problem. RIM or whoever is "in charge" needs to develop some apps that will draw in the average user. There's more to do with the Playbook or other BB device than link them to each other!! People want APPS! Plain and simple case in point why is RIM trying to make a way to get android apps on their devices? Games are a big part of what makes the Iphone and Android so popular. People like to be tech savvy but also like to play when their bored.Which brings me back the Blackberry's App World. Really? This is what you call "App World"? RIM is going to have to make some changes if they ever want to compete. And back to my original point, when someone takes the time to make a video to show off the new OS make sure it's worth showing. Ebay,Kindle...? There is something to be said for social networking but again people want power and at the same time, they want to play. Apple understands this and Android understands this, why not RIM?

So I have a playbook with OS and as far as I understatnd the following is true: (correct me if i'm wrong please any help is greatly appreciated)
1) if you have a playbook with OS 2.1 already on it then it can't be rooted at all ever agan
2) Its basically useless because you can't get any good apps for it now
3) without the ability to root them and the fact that blackberry will never get android apps the playbook should be declining in value very rapidly

Same as ty johnson1. Got a cheap second hand one recently. Any chance of rooting it? Where do you get android player? Or can it be formatted and say linux put on it?