RIM’s BlackPad won’t run BlackBerry OS
Now this is odd. When you think of RIM, you instantly think of BlackBerry. And when you think of BlackBerry, right after you think of QWERTY keyboards and whatnot, you think of BlackBerry OS.
Now at version 6, this is what has been powering RIM’s devices since the beginning.
Not so, it seems. The BlackPad will run software designed by QNX.
Who, you ask? QNX Software Systems is a company that RIM bought from Harman International Industries Inc. for a cool $200 million back in April.
Their software platforms are used by an interesting mix of companies, such as BMW, Porsche, Cisco, GE, Caterpillar, and even power an unmanned tank developed by Carnegie Mellon University’s National Robotics Engineering Center.
By using QNX software, RIM could take advantage of the many application developers that already create apps for QNX. That’s what the sources who claim that this will happen say. On the other hand, wouldn’t using BlackBerry OS 6 take advantage of the many developers already creating apps for that platform? Exactly.
One other reason that has been given for this and which sounds just a tad less strange is that BlackBerry OS 6 is a non-optimized monster that still features loads of legacy code and, to be able to compete with the iPad in sleekness (and perhaps save a bit on hardware specs), RIM had to choose a different, leaner platform such as QNX for the BlackPad.
This may turn out to be a device much more focused on creation than the iPad, which is solely focused on consumption. And that may go well with some enterprise customers that RIM already has for its BlackBerry range of smartphones.
The tablet will apparently be closely integrated with the BlackBerry email system and will have similar security for messaging.