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BlackBerry PlayBook gets new engine in tablet race
by Staff Writers
San Francisco (AFP) Feb 21, 2012

Research In Motion on Tuesday released a long-overdue new operating system for its BlackBerry PlayBook tablet computer in the hope of gaining ground in a market led by Apple and Android gadgets.

PlayBook OS 2.0 software, available as a free download, comes just shy of a year later than it was originally slated for release by the Canada-based company.

The new PlayBook engine adds email, calendar and other productivity-related capabilities to the tablets.

"The new BlackBerry PlayBook OS 2.0 introduces a range of new communications and productivity enhancements as well as expanded app and content support," said RIM senior vice president David Smith.

Freshly-installed RIM chief executive Thorsten Heins said last month that he planned to focus more on the consumer market but that a "drastic change" is not necessary at the struggling BlackBerry maker.

RIM in October set out to rev up its BlackBerry and PlayBook lines with a tactic from Apple's winning playbook -- sexy, entertaining software applications.

Known for serious, work handsets as compared to sleek Apple or Android smartphones tailored for Internet-on-the-go lifestyles, RIM used a developers conference in San Francisco to showcase game applications for its devices.

RIM is also working on a new BBX software platform that it said will provide a powerful new platform for developers for programs that focus on anything from work to games.

Heins took over RIM, which has been losing market share to Apple's iPhone and handsets powered by Google's Android platform, in January from co-CEOs Mike Lazaridis and Jim Balsillie.

RIM shares were up 0.66 percent at $15.17 in mid-day trading on Wall Street.

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China firm preparing for Apple iPad talks: lawyer
Shanghai (AFP) Feb 21, 2012
A Chinese firm involved in a trademark row with Apple over the iPad name is preparing for talks with the US technology giant, the Chinese firm's lawyer said Tuesday, raising hopes for a settlement. Electronics firm Proview Technology (Shenzhen) says it owns the Chinese rights to the "iPad" trademark and has sought to block sales of Apple's iconic tablet computer in China as well as imports a ... read more

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