Remember last month when we told you about reports that Android apps were going to be made available on RIM’s BlackBerry PlayBook? Well the Canadians have confirmed the rumour at yesterday’s revenue call.
The 7in PlayBook, which will launch on April 19 at a cost of $499.99 for the 16GB model, will now be a lot more attractive considering that over 200,000 Android apps could be available on the tablet. RIM announced that in addition to supporting its own SDK, the PlayBook will support apps written for Android 2.3 (presumably Honeycomb compatibility will follow soon) as well as BlackBerry Java. Not content with bringing us this news, RIM added that it would be bringing its AirPlay and Unity 3 games engines to the tablet.
RIM co-CEO Mike Lazaridis said: “The upcoming addition of BlackBerry Java and Android apps for the BlackBerry PlayBook on BlackBerry App World will provide our users with an even greater choice of apps and will also showcase the versatility of the platform.” While rumours of this happening have been swirling around for some time, its confirmation will no doubt help boost interest in the PlayBook - expecially considering many people had worried that there would be not enough support in terms of apps.
The news came as RIM announced revenues of $15.2 billion for 2010, helped considerably by sales of BlackBerry smartphones which soared 43 percent in 2010 to 52.3 million units. However, despite the earnings, RIM share prices fell by 10 percent in after-hours trading because of poor expected future earnings for the early part of 2011.
We look forward to seeing how RIM manages to implement this support of Android Apps and if its as “quick and easy” to port the Android apps as RIM say it is, then we would hope that many developers will choose to do so. Will this additional app goodness entice you to stump up the $500 for the PlayBook?