BlackBerry denies reports on PlayBook battery life

By Gurmukh Singh, IANS
Friday, December 31, 2010

TORONTO - BlackBerry maker Research In Motion (RIM) Thursday denied reports that the launch of its PlayBook tablet is being delayed because of its poor battery life compared to Apple’s iPad’s 10 hours.

The denial follows reports two days ago in which attributed to Kaufman Bros. analyst Shaw Wu has been quoted as saying that RIM is pushing the launch of PlayBook to May because of its crappy battery life.

Wu reportedly said in his note, “Keep in mind that QNX (the operating system on which PlayBook runs) wasn’t originally designed for mobile environments but rather for devices like network equipment and automobiles where battery life isn’t as much a constraint.”

But denying the report, RIM said anyone ascribing poor battery life to its PlayBook might have seen an early demo unit. It said the tablet will be launched on schedule in the US market.

“Any testing or observation of battery life to date by anyone outside of RIM would have been performed using pre-beta units that were built without power management implemented. RIM is on track with its schedule to optimize the BlackBerry PlayBook’s battery life and looks forward to providing customers with a professional grade tablet that offers superior performance with comparable battery life,” RIM said a statement.

Unveiled in September, the RIM tablet is aimed at mostly at business people, just like its BlackBerry smart phone.

It will stand apart from Apple’s iPad for not only its seven-inch display as against iPad’s 9.7 inches, but also its Adobe Flash for running video and graphic works. Apple has shunned Flash.

The tablet, which will fit neatly into a small corporate suitcase, is to hit the North American market early next year and available elsewhere later in 2011.

PlayBook will operate on a new software platform built by QNX Software Systems. RIM acquired Ottawa-based QNX Software Systems for $200 million in April to have exclusive access to its software technology for its tablet.

RIM has also announced to sell PlayBook below $500 to undercut iPad sales.

(Gurmukh Singh can be contacted at

Filed under: Economy

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