RIM is preparing a new OS - called BlackBerry 10 - to replace the two current OSes that it uses (BB OS 7 on phones and Tablet OS on the PlayBook). The BB OS 10 will launch late this year, but app developers can look forward to playing with it sooner - 2000 developer prototypes running a version of the OS will be given to the attendees of the BlackBerry Jam conference taking place in early May.
RIM’s VP of developer relations, Alec Saunders, says that the prototypes will have a very different user experience compared to the finalized BlackBerry 10 OS as they are intended to be just tools to help developers port their apps to the new platform.
The BlackBerry PlayBook‘s OS is reportedly similar to what BB 10 will be and that will make porting PlayBook apps to the new OS easy. Saunders says his goal is that “every single PlayBook app works on BB10”.
That‘s good, but what’s with RIM’s reluctance to show what the finalized OS will look like? Saunders says this is intentional as they want to take time and build up interest before launching the OS.
We have seen some alleged screenshots of the upcoming OS, but who knows how much will change until the time comes for RIM to unleash the first BlackBerry 10-powered devices.
New phones that run on BlackBerry OS 10 won’t be here for a while (at least until Q3 according to leaked roadmap), the oft leaked BlackBerry London might be the first. The PlayBook will see an update to BB OS 10 too, but it’s not clear if that will happen before or after the BB 10 phones launch.