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BlackBerry bolsters Android app support in PlayBook beta release

BlackBerry bolsters Android app support in PlayBook beta release
RIM has launched the latest beta of PlayBook OS, with version 2.1.0 boasting enhancements in the platform’s Android runtime, among other upgrades.

The latest version of the OS is designed to make bringing Android apps to RIM’s tablet a lot easier, allowing the apps in question to access native PlayBook features, such as the device's camera and the ability to run in their own window.

Developers can now also equip in-app purchases, with RIM handing Android developers access to the BlackBerry Payments SDK.

Feature focus

"Full device encryption is now supported, so that the whole device and personal partition can be secure," detailed RIM on the BlackBerry Developer Blog.

"If you develop an application that deals with sensitive personal information, you may want to include a suggestion to your users that they turn this feature on.

"Finally, there is a minor update I noticed which developers asked for and will be well received: screenshots are now saved in lossless PNG format. That should help quite a bit when you want to promote your application and add screenshots to the BlackBerry App World storefront."

The move to support Android apps is designed to bring more studios to the PlayBook platform, with the tablet having shipped around 1.35 million units since launch based on the firm's last financial report back in March.

The company claims the 2.1 Android SDK will be released in full when the platform update itself hits commercial devices.

[source: RIM]

With a fine eye for detail, Keith Andrew is fuelled by strong coffee, Kylie Minogue and the shapely curve of a san serif font.

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