Cape Town - BlackBerry maker Research In Motion has released the next version of its PlayBook tablet operating system software.
BlackBerry PlayBook OS 2.1 update is meant to upgrade security for
consumers on the devices as the company looks to drive sales despite
losing market share in the US to competitors running Google's Android
operating system and Apple's iOS.
RIM was quick to point out that
the upgrade contained "enterprise-grade encryption" and the company has
had some success in ensuring that its devices are secure.
Its BlackBerry 7 operating system for smartphones met security criteria for evaluation assurance level 4+.
evaluation assurance level 4+ came into effect in 1999 and is the
highest level of accreditation under the Common Criteria Recognition
Arrangement (CCRA) recognised by 26 countries.
owners can use the BlackBerry Internet Service (BIS) package on their
BlackBerry smartphones to access the internet on the Wi-Fi devices at no
additional cost and the upgrade also allows the sending of SMSes in the
new version of BlackBerry Bridge, the software that connects the tablet to the smartphone.
is targeting corporates with its BlackBerry products after new CEO
Thorsten Heins said that the firm was all but abandoning the fight for
the consumer smartphone market, in the face of stiff competition from
US industry tracker comScore revealed in October that in
the US, Samsung was the top handset manufacturer at 25.7% of the market,
while RIM products slid 3.1% to 8.3%.
In SA though, BlackBerry devices dominate the smartphones with an over 50% market share, thanks in part to its BIS offering.
there are no reliable public statistics on the number of PlayBooks
sold, RIM said that the upgrade was free to all PlayBook owners.
company is widely expected to release its much anticipated BlackBerry
10 devices in early 2013 and has been courting developers to write apps
for the platform.