No BBM app for PlayBook soon, admits RIM

BlackBerry tablet OS 2.0 delayed too

RIM BlackBerry PlayBook

RIM has delayed the release of the next major upgrade to its BlackBerry PlayBook's operating system - and won't be including BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) at launch.

"We expect to deliver the new BlackBerry PlayBook OS to customers in February 2012," blogged David J Smith, RIM's PlayBook chief yesterday.

App developers were provided with a pre-release version of PlayBook OS 2.0 last week. The operating system is based on the real-time OS QNX, which RIM bought in April 2010.

While discussing PlayBook OS 2.0, Smith said: "We have decided to defer the inclusion of the BBM application to a subsequent BlackBerry PlayBook OS release."

PlayBook owners can use BBM today, but only by link a BlackBerry handset to the tablet, which then operates as a monitor for the smartphone. It's this clunky approach, plus the lack of a native email client, that many observers have blamed for the PlayBook's poor sales since its launch in May.

RIM recently slashed the PlayBook's price in a bid to get the tablet into the hands of more consumers. While they may not care overly about RIM's OS release schedule, the lack of BBM - a very popular app on BlackBerry handsets - is going to put many of them off. ®

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