RIM To Unveil Updated PlayBook OS, BlackBerry 7.1 [CES 2012]


BlackBerry Playbook
Image used under CC license from Flickr user: estilopda

If Research in Motion is gambling on its future, it picked the right venue: the Las Vegas-based CES 2012. The Waterloo, Ont. company plans to introduce an updated version of its PlayBook Operating System, as well as its new BlackBerry 7.1 software amid a storm of criticism. But can new software alone resurrect a troubled tech company?

RIM will preview features for its tablet OS for those attending the trade show, which begins Tuesday. Owners of the PlayBook device can download the OS for free in February, the company announced. Tablet users will be able to upgrade their messaging ability, have better support for social media and a “Bridge” feature that claims to let smartphone users adapt their BlackBerry as a keyboard and mouse for the tablet.

RIM has been criticized for repeatedly delaying their BlackBerry 7.1 software. The new smartphone software is expected to include updates to the BBM messaging, BlackBerry Traffic and BlackBerry Travel apps. The company recently announced its new BlackBerry would not be available until 2013, a move some felt would heavily advantage the iPhone.