BlackBerry PlayBook Update Adds Improved Android Compatibility
The RIM PlayBook by just received a developers update that adds some interesting new Android functionality to RIM’s tablet. This new version now supports Android apps running in their own windows, improving compatibility with the general Android app universe.
Improved HTML5 support
Portrait support for Email, Calendar and Contacts
Improved folder support including IMAP folder support
Full device encryption is now supported, so that the whole device and personal partition can be secure.
Screenshots are now saved in lossless PNG format.
Each Android app will now run in its own window. This greatly improves the user experience and consistency among the other application runtimes.
Access to the Camera hardware is now supported for Android apps, allowing many more application types to work on the BlackBerry® PlayBook™ tablet.
In-App Payment is now supported through the BlackBerry Payment SDK, so Android applications can include virtual items for sale in their applications.
This version is butting up against the incoming BB10 OS that will soon appear on phones and tablets, but, as the Verge notes, the BB10 PlayBook should be able to run apps written for previous OS versions.
Oddly, this version seems like a bit of a dead end but it’s nice to see Android functionality getting fleshed out more concretely.