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RIM Sweden makes meeting collaboration colorful and awesome with Confetti app for BlackBerry PlayBook

By Simon Sage on 28 Feb 2012 10:30 am EST
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RIM's Sweden branch, previously known as The Astonishing Tribe, has made a big splash at Mobile World Congress 2012. One of two new concepts that they're showing off is called Confetti. It's a simple collaboration app that lets you easily transfer files between BlackBerry PlayBooks with a lot more flair than you'd expect. By mounting a webcam on the cieling, the PlayBooks are recognized, assigned a color, and positioned in relation to one another. Before a meeting starts, there's a casual game of virtual catch that you play by tapping your screen's dot. It shoots a streaming of jagged, funky pixels over to another member, and you keep bumping it around until the meeting is ready to start.

You launch the meeting with the top-down swipe, and now you can get to work. Little bubbles show up around the edge of your screen, each representing someone in the meeting, and they change position as the owner moves around. You can use the system menu to pull in images and documents, which can then be dragged to one of these edge bubbles to transfer the file over the local Wi-Fi network. You can also broadcast the file to the other users by pinch-zooming, or using a special gesture, shunt the image out to a projector. You can still share files directly with other users during this exposition mode by moving two BlackBerry PlayBooks close to one another.

Files are transferred over Wi-Fi, but Bluetooth is equally possible, and it's easy to imagine peer-to-peer pairing to be initiated by NFC down the road. If you've got an office already equipped with a bunch of PlayBooks, and you already need a spare to host the file transfers anyway, it might be easier to temporarily suspend one from the cieling than permanently dangling a webcam, but whatever works.  

Now, of course we all want this. This is awesome. RIM needs to put everything TAT cooks up in BlackBerry App World. If the App World was exclusively a conduit for TAT apps, and nothing else, I would be perfectly happy with the PlayBook. Unfortunately, TAT was showing off some pretty sweet stuff last year that never found its way into the wild, so the precedent isn't great. As you'll see in my next video, my challenge to Michael was this: "How many CrackBerry.com comments would it take to get this app into App World?" So guys, make some noise in the comments, and show RIM just how serious you are about getting your hands on this beautiful, productive, creative app. 

51 comments

AgentScribe

Color me stupid, but how does mounting a Webcam to the ceiling constitute a "simple" collaboration app? Am I misunderstanding something? Was the Webcam merely for the demonstration or is it part of the collaboration tool?

Former BB Fanboy who came up the ranks from a Curve to a Bold to a Torch before jumping ship to Android. Waiting longingly for the BB that brings me back. It's an OS thing, not form factor.

Maiev

its cheap and affordable. I'd so buy a webcam and mount it to the ceiling just for fun :)

Simon Sage

Well, the app's simple, the set-up isn't. Plus, like they said, it's just a tech demo for the time being. I would be interested in seeing if they could pull off the same thing by only using the magnetometers. 

peterallcdn

I would think the webcam is really only needed for the playbooks to be aware of their position and have the coloured bubbles reflect those positions. However, much of this file sharing technology could still be used, the coloured bubbles would just be static and have a playbooks id written on it. Granted this technique wouldn't be quite as fluid, but would still provide great functionality.

Mathrin

That would be awesome for work, but I wouldn't be able to use it. Everybody's brain would explode and we would have to hire more people.

mnhockeycoach99

Just wondering how practical a webcam hanging from the ceiling is. It would be nice if this could be done through software with the existing hardware.

Regardless, I love the apps I have seen from TAT.

robertyoung

Most companies' meeting rooms have $1K+ projectors hanging from the ceilings, I doubt a webcam is a big deal.

ghostzapper

What is RIM's modus operandi - teasing or execution?

san4berry

would be cool if they could take this concept and make the same kind of system for DLNA sharing to a tv or bluetooth device. i would love to just flick what i want to share to my TV and have it appear like that
again, these concepts are great, BUT unfortunately something we as consumers will never see.

OniBerry

It very nice for TAT and RIM to show us some awesome demos, but at the end, they will eventually have to come out with one of their concepts. I am starting to get tired of 'Whats coming' or 'Look what we can do'. I would like to see something more tangible.

screamlordbyron

Dear god! Please put some of TAT's stuff into release! If RIM wants to attract interest in the Playbook, what better way than having apps like this, which no one else is doing? (Well, that and having decent native MS Office and .pdf apps.)

Micromind

Amazing ............... no other words ...........

chammer101

I want, please release even in beta. Just mark it as is support. Or point them to Crackberry.com for support ;)

I really appreciate these types of apps, HOWEVER what about having TAT work on something like DLNA client/server?

revil-0-316

I'm tired of waiting...of all of TAT's amazing applications...let's start a petition to be lead by crackberry simon/kevin, blackberry addicts will had a full support for this and will make RIM and TAT to move their ass faster. What do you thinks guys?

Trick_Deck

Kinda thrown by the webcam thing but. None the less I want this on me and my loved ones pbs ASAP

pmich

it's ceiling...not cieling. I before E...except after C.

andrewmcwhirter

Very cool! If this would work with any cheap webcam, then the concept isn't so hard to swallow. Remember, this is a collaboration tool that companies will use, not something the average consumer would. I'm sure similar functionality involving sharing files can be incorporated without a camera fairly easily.

david_nbyla

TAT = The Astonishing Tease, it drives me crazy to no end that TAT hasn't releases anything to App World but the Scrapbook app...

lawguyman

TAT needs to focus on completing something instead of just doing all these cool demos. All we have is the Scrapbook. It gets ridiculous after a while.

When is Cascades coming, for example? Would it have been released already if effort was not devoted to stuff like this that will probably never see the light of day?

kierangunn

I want this for my corporation, period.
Tablets have not broken into everyday use her yet but this would send the executives into a frenzy.

Corporate selling points.
- Email via bridge = security.
- Secure Video Chat
- Meeting document collaboration.

Nigelbrown

RIM, deliver TAT products....make them deliver, even in a demo form.

cbcastle

Love the idea, lets see it pushed towards a more consumer focus. Maybe you can have a Blackberry ID flotting around your screen and then just flick content to that, whether it be local or across the internet...

You would certainly want this for your household BB 10 phone and playbook setup, just so you can flick stuff over to wife's device..

ghostzapper

I agree with the sentiment of this thread. Wow but sick and tired of waiting and being teased. Surely Thorsten will bring a stop to this or deliver.

jghellion

For the love of God get the TAT apps on BB appworld! This is a no brainier. There are already a lot of people looking for the cascade photo app that was on display at Devcon.

If it's available, don't keep it to yourselves RIM, make it available, people want this stuff.

GreenCopperz

Ditto - Do we need to get the megaphone and blare this aloud in front of their headquarters?

El Platanero

Well I'm up for commenting over and over if it will get TAT to release some of these fine concepts into reality. These apps by themselves would put Blackberry back in the know.

D_shak

In my opinion if they came demo it then they can deliver it. I know they'd probably need to do some tweeking before release but come on, finish what you start and get it to the public. If you want to gain customers you have to deliver not just tease!

willwnet

Love this demo - I hope RIM brings some of these ideas (Confetti, PitchRocket, Trails) and makes some great business/collaboration tools for BB10/PlayBook users.

It is time some of these inspirational demos start to see the light of day!

GreenCopperz

RIM - PLEASE pull your head out of the sand and get this App into our hands so we can demonstrate to our Apple hoarding colleagues and show the true BlackBerry potential!

VirtualTourist

Ease of use ... no matter how cheap a webcam is, the fact that you need it to work is of limited appeal ... only to be used in a boardroom with a webcam and no doubt software installed outside of Playbooks and integration of webcam service to playbooks or something else for it all to work ... sure fire appeal from an ease of use perspective.

magswlu

get this on app world!

Maiev

get this on appworld!

4abetterworld

Truth is it's not that complicated to implement for many companies that would want to have this feature. But it looks like not all of the pieces are as of yet released for the playbook, but the good news is that it's probably not that far off either.

For instance, the webcam that gets mounted to the ceiling needs to be connected to the "master" playbook, presumably by usb to calculate the relative position of the playbooks. USB hosting isn't publicly available yet and neither are the drivers...

When those are in place, we'll see these types of apps take off...

q649

Get the source code out in the wild.

This could have implications similar to now the Kinect is being used by the hacker community. Stop being so closed-source; let the masses play.

Maxey05

That's awesome! Hopefully they can figure out a more efficient way to make it functional...

bergeronjc

That is just pointless. Absolutely, completely, 100% pointless. Even if everyone in a meeting had a Playbook, why would a company put a camera in the ceiling just to play games on it (everyone knows, no one uses a tablet for note taking).

Also, outside of RIM, there's gotta be a 1,000,000:1 odds that one company has enough Playbooks (among Execs or upper-mgmt) to make this app worthwhile.

18 months and RIM will announce their exit from the tablet and handset hardware market.

joski

Wow, I wonder if you're as much of a pontificating idiot in real life as you are to me, based on this post alone?! :\

abwan11

Class rooms could utilize this, training centre etc. It's inspirational, to open up peoples minds to think. Ideas are free.

Snipperdo17

stuff like this is unreal..they need to market this kind of wow features for BB10

FuzzyFish

That is absolutely awesome, but unfortunately I don't have much use for it. RIM does need to release a lot of these TAT developed apps to the public. Wow!

XtasyX

looks fun!!! would definitely be useful for my business meetings

needforbbx

Awesome, but what's the point from a user perspective if it's never going to get to us. We've seen amazing concepts/apps from TAT, which still have not been delivered. Sorry cynical - I know - but the TAT picture app and contact list app are still a no show. Maybe all these goodies will come as one big bang in BBX - giving it a shock and awe factor.

anthogag

Why would this app, that's obviously working on playbooks (and "it would work through bluetooth"), not be available in App World????

Why would it just be an inspirational demo????

If RIM wants to sell playbooks for more than $300 and compete with other tablets for consumer interest they have to give us the cool stuff they're showing at conferences. These demos are better than any Netflix or Skype app.

They shouldn't wait for developers to do it.

rub18

I want this app!!!!So, RIM if you please!!!!

jchavealot

Yes! I so want this app!

CrackBook77

TAT comes up with the best apps, but they never actually release them. Are they not in business to make money? My big issue is that the Playbook is amazing and does everything I need and more but this is something that will blow the competition away.......BUT with RIM and TAT not pushing these apps out there it seems like they are trying to fail when they have all the right tools to succeed and succeed far far above the competition.

abwan11

I agree, the creativity that flows from these guys is incredible. They have a vision which isn't showing up on rims front Page.

These guys should have developed the playbook icon tray through to the email and everything inbetween. Cohesion.

They may be stuck in their office, with absolutely no say in what rim is going to do with their work.

RIMs chief needs to let these guys loose and do it now

baandoptager

If TAT gets more action. BB wil win.. biiig tiiiimmmeee

kongee28

make it happen for real!