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BlackBerry PlayBook will not receive BlackBerry 10 update

News by Andrew Kameka on Friday June 28, 2013.

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Though BlackBerry originally said that it would update its PlayBook tablet to the BlackBerry 10 operating system, the company today revealed that it has decided not to deliver an update to its failed iPad challenger. CEO Thorsten Heins said during the BlackBerry earnings call that BlackBerry was unable to make the newer BB10 software operate on the PlayBook reliably, so the company has gone back on its promise to update the tablet. The PlayBook, which was first released in 2011 with a 1 GHz TI OMAP 4430 processor, could not meet the performance requirements necessary to smoothly run BB10 .

BlackBerry has decided to focus on its smartphone offerings and leave the tablet market to competitors. Heins has signaled for several months that he sees little value in pursuing tablets because the market is dominated by one player, Apple, and it takes a unique approach to deliver something more than just a "me too" device. The PlayBook failed to connect with consumers, though BlackBerry claims that it shipped approximately 100,000 PlayBooks in the last three months.

Heins has suggested that the popularity of tablets will fade as consumers move to a model of relying on more powerful smartphones for most of their communication and media consumption, and then turn to desktops for all other needs. BlackBerry 10 was built to usher in a new era of "mobile computing," according to Heins, so BlackBerry will shift focus to its smartphone products.

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Andrew Kameka
Andrew is based in Miami, Florida.

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