RIM's PlayBook will run Android apps

The BlackBerry maker says that its forthcoming tablet will run Android 2.3 apps in addition to BlackBerry apps.

RIM's BlackBerry PlayBook will also run Android 2.3 apps.
RIM's BlackBerry PlayBook will also run Android 2.3 apps. James Martin/CNET

So the rumors were true: Research In Motion announced today it will allow Android apps on its yet-to-be-released tablet, the PlayBook.

RIM + Android = <3?

Is RIM's openness to Android apps a sign of strength or weakness?

The forthcoming tablet will have "app players" that will run BlackBerry apps created in Java, and apps created for Android 2.3.

Having the option of downloading Android apps on BlackBerry App World "will provide our users with an even greater choice of apps and will also showcase the versatility of the platform," Mike Lazaridis, president and co-CEO of RIM, said in a statement.

For developers working on apps, RIM says a "high degree of API compatibility" makes it easy to port BlackBerry Java and Android apps to the BlackBerry Tablet OS that will run on the PlayBook.

Word began to spread that RIM was thinking of allowing Android apps on its tablet starting in January. Many dismissed it because RIM had spent a lot of money to buy QNX, which makes the software on which the BlackBerry Tablet OS is built, and because it had done so much work with its own BlackBerry developer community.

RIM announced a 32 percent increase in quarterly earnings today, but warned of weakness in the coming quarter.

About the author

Erica Ogg is a CNET News reporter who covers Apple, HP, Dell, and other PC makers, as well as the consumer electronics industry. She's also one of the hosts of CNET News' Daily Podcast. In her non-work life, she's a history geek, a loyal Dodgers fan, and a mac-and-cheese connoisseur.

 

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