The PlayBook tablet is BlackBerry’s venture into the tablet market and wasn’t the seller they might have hoped. It also acted as a testing ground for the new smartphone OS BB10 launching next year. Since BlackBerry wrote down the loss on it’s books for the tablet it initiated deep price cuts which has certainly both raised the devices profile and has more than succeeded in shifting a few more. Personally I think the tablet is unfairly maligned but I put this down to one of BlackBerry’s biggest challenges or weaknesses, it’s ability to market itself properly.

All that aside the next operating system update for the PlayBook on the way to BB10 will be OS 2.1. Some documents have been found on BlackBerry’s site detailing what we can expect from it including:

  • Ability to send text messages from your PlayBook over Bridge
  • WiFi bridge together with Bluetooth if both devices are on the same WiFi network to improve transfer speeds
  • Improved browser

We’re still not sure when this will drop but it’s good to see that BlackBerry are still working on OS2 in advance of BB10. Hopefully we’ll see this update soon. The OS 2.1 doc can be found here although it’s more to do with the security features of the update rather than the new features:

BlackBerry PlayBook OS2.1 Technical Overview