Blackberry touts its tablet as a symbiosis of entertainment and work. After all, that excludes the large selection of apps on the Android Market. Business player or professional consumer? That is followed by "Work smarter.
Messages No, the biggest point of discussion at the PlayBook's launch was what it couldn't do. The biggest point of discussion at the launch of the PlayBook wasn't the thing's stout build quality, its stoic good looks or even its finger-friendly gestures. No, the biggest tale was what it couldn't do.
It lacked a dedicated email app, had no concept of a calendar and couldn't even keep track of your contacts. Sure, there was a Gmail icon sitting there next to the other apps, but that was just a link to an optimized version of the web interface. It didn't fool anybody.
As we mentioned, more and more people are forgoing email for other means of communication and those still down with POP are largely sending their missives through some online service or another.
But, for a platform that made a name for itself by producing the most email-friendly smartphones on the planet, producing a tablet by the same name that's completely ignorant to the stuff was a glaring oversight.
Of course, the PlayBook could send emails, but only when paired with a willing BlackBerry smartphone via the Bridge app. That 'ol Bridge is still here, which we'll discuss in just a moment, and now users are swimming in a wealth of messaging options.
Both Bridge and Messages let you send and receive emails and, should you configure the same email account in both you'll get not one but two notifications with every email you receive! That is every bit as annoying as it sounds.
Thankfully Messages is much more than just email. Through it you can aggregate messaging from Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn -- the most important social network for suits -- though you are limited to only one of each.
Add a bunch and everything will be all jumbled together into a single view of what's going on. Every friend request, every Twitter DM and every desperate "Know of any openings?
The integrated view is nice if you're a casual communicator, but if you're the social sort things quickly become overwhelming. Thankfully, with a tap in the list of accounts on the left you can display only content from that source, and you can also filter by folder or label, in the case of Gmail.
While you can view other content, this is not a replacement for the various other social apps in there. For example, unlike the generally quite good Facebook app, in Messages you can only view messages, friend requests and events. No status updates here.
The email sending interface is clean and simple and pretty much everything you would expect. There's a box for "To," a box for "Cc," a third for "Subject" and, finally, the place where you type in the body itself. No, Bcc is not supported, but attachments thankfully are, and you can choose any file you like.
Contacts and Calendar Yes, there are new applications to manage these things, too. We signed in with our Gmail and Facebook accounts and the tablet made quick work of our pending appointments, listing them all in a simple, straightforward calendar view.
You can create new events and push them to any of those accounts, but the functionality is somewhat limited compared to the real thing. For example, you can create an event on your Google Calendar, but you can't specify anything more than a simple pop-up reminder. The Contacts app is similarly functional, pulling down whatever your social networks want to serve up.
However, it's not particularly smart. For example, we have plenty of friends in LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter who appeared two or three separate times in the list.
You can manually link them together if you're so inclined, but that sounds only marginally more entertaining than manually defragmenting your hard drive bit by bit.
Android Happening across an Android app in the App World is a bit like winning the lottery: As nice as it is to finally have some proper integrated messaging, the most talked-about feature here is the ability to run Android apps right out of the box.
You'll find them in the App World -- well, you might find them. RIM didn't want to make these stand out beyond the standard apps, so happening across an official APK is a bit like winning the lottery: So we specifically went looking for some clues on what to search for, and we had the most luck poking around the CrackBerry forums for posts by lucky winners.
In this thread we found a short list of available apps and downloaded two: The apps download and install quickly and smoothly enough, like any other app, and they're listed right next to any native apps with nothing untoward about their icons.
Just make sure you save up a little extra patience the first time you run them.
Select one and you'll be presented with a black screen telling you that the app is "initializing" and ask that you "please wait.
Android apps will later load more quickly and, once in memory, seem to run well. We prefer the still excellent stock PlayBook browser to Dolphin HD, but that's not to say the other one doesn't swim very well in these unusual waters.Dec 31, · This is the third prototype for a paperless note taking device.
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2 comments BB10APPS has listed Meeting Minutes Pro among the top 5 productivity apps released in for the BlackBerry PlayBook.
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