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RIM Said to Plan PlayBook Software to Run Google Apps

Posted by Mohd Khairun Nasir Saadi On - - 0 comments


Research In Motion Ltd., looking to score a hit with its PlayBook tablet computer, is working on software to allow the device to run applications for Google Inc.’s Android, three people familiar with the matter said.

RIM plans to integrate the technology with the PlayBook operating system, giving customers access to Android’s more than 130,000 apps, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the effort isn’t public. RIM, after looking outside the company, is developing the software internally and may have it ready in the second half, two people said.

The Waterloo, Ontario-based company aims to make the PlayBook stand out against Apple Inc.’s iPad and a rising number of competing devices. By offering a tablet with the security and messaging of BlackBerry smartphones and the wide choice of Android apps, RIM may be able to woo customers who would otherwise opt for alternative devices, said Chetan Sharma, an independent wireless analyst in Issaquah, Washington.

“It will be a shrewd move to let Android apps run RIM without any performance or user interface hiccups,” said Sharma in an interview. “It will make the RIM platform attractive to consumers as it lacks the strength of the rivals from an apps perspective.”

Marisa Conway, a spokeswoman for RIM, declined to comment. RIM has said it plans to introduce its tablet in the U.S. in the first quarter and then overseas.

RIM rose $3.31, or 5.2 percent, to $66.88 at 4 p.m. New York time in Nasdaq Stock Market trading. It was the biggest gain in three months and lifted the stock to its highest level since May 2010. RIM fell 14 percent last year as Apple climbed 53 percent and Google declined 4.2 percent.
Android Rising

Android tablets captured 22 percent of global shipments in the three months to Dec. 31, a tenfold jump from a year earlier, according to Boston-based Strategy Analytics. That narrowed Apple’s share of the tablet market to 75 percent, from about 95 percent three months earlier.

There are about six times as many apps available from Google’s Android Market as the 20,000 in RIM’s App World. The selection has helped companies that make Android devices, including Motorola Mobility Holdings Inc. and Samsung Electronics Co. Android became the world’s top smartphone platform, researcher Canalys said last month.
No Dalvik

RIM had considered using Google’s Dalvik, the Java software used in running Android apps, and decided against it for reasons including an ongoing patent dispute between Oracle Corp. and Google over the software, two people said.

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Pictures: engadget

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