Hands-on with BlackBerry Playbook tablet OS
Earlier today, RIM opened up its BlackBerry PlayBook devkit to all developers who may be interested in creating apps for the forthcoming tablet. The company also allowed anybody to download a beta ISO of its OS simulator, mainly to allow programmers to test their applications as they go.
However, Pocket-lint has gone through the (fairly) lengthy process to install the new OS on a PC, and this is what we've found...
Er. Not much, to be honest. Obviously, a tablet device is really defined by the software installed on it. At present, on the beta version of the OS, there are no pre-installed apps. It's pretty barren in functionality and features, although, as the Virtual Machine instructions require that you set the internal memory to 1024MB, we suspect that the final device will have at least that as its RAM (as also suggested at its launch in September).
Other than that, the OS comes with a basic media player, and section headers for Internet, Media, Games, Utilities, and an extra one that is most-likely specific to the development software, core.test.
It certainly runs smoothly, and there's an option to enable Development Mode, in order to try out applications on the fly.
That's it really. It's all pretty basic at the moment, but maybe simplicity will be key to RIM's efforts to muscle in on the tablet market.
You can try out the OS yourself, available from the BlackBerry website, but it's probably worth holding off until there's more to see.