The more time I spend at CES 2012 playing with PlayBook OS 2.0 and talking to others who have gone hands-on with it (and I'm talking people here who are not BlackBerry users and are walking away impressed), the more I'm getting really positive again about the future of BlackBerry. Between the awesome implementaton of native email and calendar and unique features like BlackBerry remote control functionality and BlackBerry Balance, it's showing there's a lot of innovation and great thinking happening at RIM. With PlayBook OS 2.0 leading the way into BlackBerry 10, things will be looking really great come time for BlackBerry 10 phones.
One other area that RIM has made progress on in PlayBook OS 2.0 is with the Video Chat client. You'll want to check out the video above to see it in action, but what I'm loving here in addition to some UI tweaks are two awesome feature additions. The first is automatic detection of chat contacts. By leveraging RIM's NOC infrastructure, they automatically scan the address book to match addresses to BlackBerry IDs, thus auto-populating the list of people you have BlackBerry devices with video chat capability. And secondly, there is now presence awareness, showing you when people are available to chat or not. Definitely welcome features that I can't wait to take advantage of on the PlayBook, and even more so on BlackBerry 10 phones.
A new 5G BlackBerry Android smartphone with a keyboard will arrive in 2021
A new joint announcement from BlackBerry, OnwardMobility, and FIH Mobile lays out the plans for a new 5G BlackBerry Android smartphone with a physical keyboard to be brought to market in North America, and Europe within the first half of 2021.