RIM BlackBerry PlayBook becomes first tablet certified for U.S. government

RIM BlackBerry PlayBook becomes first tablet certified for U.S. government

Summary: The iPad and other tablets have been primarily focused on the email and media experience, but the federal government is more interested in security and utility. The PlayBook just earned certification that could see PlayBooks appearing in the hands of federal employees.

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You may not think so from my recent BlackBerry PlayBook post, but I do really like the device and think it has the potential to be one of the best tablets available. I bought one on release day, just finished writing Wiley's BlackBerry PlayBook Companion, and I am still seriously considering a BlackBerry Bold 9900 purchase when these new BlackBerry smartphones launch. RIM announced that the PlayBook is the first tablet certified for the U.S. government.

RIM launched the BlackBerry PlayBook with support for personal/business/government data only available through a Bluetooth connection with a BlackBerry smartphone. This upset quite a few people and disappointed me a bit too since I don't have a BB smartphone myself. However, this tight control on data likely helped RIM gain FIPS (Federal Information Processing Standard) certification from NIST and now we may see BlackBerry PlayBook tablets appearing in the hands of federal government employees.

I served in the U.S. Coast Guard for 12 years and would have loved to have a large screen tablet to go along with my mobile phone for easier review and editing of data on the go. We haven't yet seen any announcements for major government orders, but now with the FIPS certification those may be coming and it would be a great time for RIM to continue improving the PlayBook through software updates.

The BlackBerry PlayBook also just earned the Best in Show and Best of FOSE in handheld devices category at this federal government information technology conference in DC this week. RIM advertises the PlayBook as the world's first professional-grade tablet and this certification and awards help back up that claim.

Topics: Laptops, Hardware, Mobile OS, Mobility, BlackBerry, Security, Tablets

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39 comments
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  • RE: RIM BlackBerry PlayBook becomes first tablet certified for U.S. government

    That sounds cool and all, but I doubt it would adequately replace my iPad. :-)
    Tiggster79
    • Playbook Certified

      @LynxSteve
      You must be doing little but playing apps....the Playbook is and will be so much more.
      I believe that now that security certification is in place, the roll out of the "BIG" upgrade for PIM etc., and android player will be very, very soon....then all bets are off as the Playbook will be in a class of its own
      Ejeff
      • RIM secure? What a joke.

        @Ejeff Every terrorist group and their mothers have access to the source code and keys for RIM products. RIM made sure of that when they gave up to the demands of hostile/oppressive governments just to sell in their market.
        wackoae
      • RE: RIM BlackBerry PlayBook becomes first tablet certified for U.S. government

        @wackoae : "Every terrorist group and their mothers have access to the source code and keys" - Ya? First I heard of this. It's nice to comment about something without any proof like a link. If you are talking about India or Saudi arabia, whey didn't open up the saource code and whatever and said "here ya go - have fun". It's more like read only access than giving out the keys. If they did that users would be dropping their Blackberries faster than you can say "Yo" [excluding those who jumped to the hyped iPhones].
        Gis Bun
    • RE: RIM BlackBerry PlayBook becomes first tablet certified for U.S. government

      @LynxSteve
      I have both and they are both great products. We end up using the playbook more though. Better browser experience even with the smaller screen and I don't need to download an App for every website I want to view because I have Flash.
      sharkboyjohn
      • Bad lier always say the stupidest things ....

        @sharkboyjohn

        need to download an App for every website ....

        that's a good one.
        wackoae
      • RE: RIM BlackBerry PlayBook becomes first tablet certified for U.S. government

        @sharkboyjohn The flash argument is old. There is alternatives. I am able to to watch live streaming events o. iPad threw skyfire with a non jail broken iPad.
        illwill112
  • RE: RIM BlackBerry PlayBook becomes first tablet certified for U.S. government

    I own an ipad, its cool.. but from the videos, the blackberry playbook looks exciting.
    GraXY
    • RE: RIM BlackBerry PlayBook becomes first tablet certified for U.S. government

      @GraXY The fact that it doesn't have 3G connectivity and isn't likely to build up a decent app marketplace ruined it for me. It really is all about the apps on a tablet platform.
      Tiggster79
      • RE: RIM BlackBerry PlayBook becomes first tablet certified for U.S. government

        @LynxSteve
        I remember getting my ipad and downloading some 20 odd apps including games. Used it for about a month . There was a crack on the screen and Apple - I must appreciate this - replaced the ipad free of cost. Now, it just sits on my table not being used much. Yes, the apps are great, but why would I need so many apps? Ipad is a great entertainment device for somebody who has the time, but I need something which helps me with my work. The blackberry playbook seem to fit the package better. I own a blackberry curve and as all BB users will swear, it is glued to me...
        GraXY
      • The fact that it can't do email should tell you something

        @LynxSteve Playbook can't even do basic email unless tethered to a Blackberry phone .... and you have to pay extra for the pleasure of tethering (legally).
        wackoae
      • RE: RIM BlackBerry PlayBook becomes first tablet certified for U.S. government

        @LynxSteve Blah Blah Blah Blah dont' listen to this poor propaganda against Blackberry. Read this article instead: http://tablettechtoday.com/news/news-news/the-usage-of-rim%E2%80%99s-playbook-permitted-by-feds-for-government-use.html
        Bonchucin
  • RE: RIM BlackBerry PlayBook becomes first tablet certified for U.S. government

    The whole purpose of the new tablets is to have an "All in One" stand alone unit with 3G/4G. The Playbook is basically an external hardware device for a BB smart phone.
    Eric1968
    • play book 3g

      @Eric1968 3g 4g versions are out to be launched as soon as the bugs are fixed. there will also be the android app player. once that happens it will become a very strong market player and the critics will be silenced. they are following a correct strategy of not rushing the 3g version to the market. there is this ipad mania which needs to die down. it will eventually and consumers will realize that apple is not the only game in town, that will be moment to strike. the wi-fi version is just for the blackberry devoted users.
      augustus_rome
      • RE: RIM BlackBerry PlayBook becomes first tablet certified for U.S. government

        @augustus_rome - sniff whatever vaporware that helps you sleep at night.
        jamboy34
      • RE: RIM BlackBerry PlayBook becomes first tablet certified for U.S. government

        @augustus_rome
        I would suggest that when they add 3G and 4G they are going to have to be certified all over. Why? For the reasons others have pointed out. You can't use it for email so effectively all that was happening was the REcertification of the BB phone.

        I don't own a BB phone (or an iPhone) and I don't want a BB phone. I spent half my time in Canada and half in the US. I have cheap Virgin phones for use in each country. My iPad is great when crossing the border. Just pop out the Bell card and slide in the AT&T card and I'm set to go. When I cost out using a Playbook and a BB phone in each country the cost goes off the wall - more than 4 times what I'm paying now. I guess corporate geeks don't mind spending other peoples' money.
        grandriver125
    • RE: RIM BlackBerry PlayBook becomes first tablet certified for U.S. government

      @Eric1968

      Ironically the best setting iPad is the WiFi model as well Xoom has quickly offered one as well.

      There is nothing wrong with a WiFi model as the bulk of use is still in home or office where WiFi is present.

      I use my Playbook either through my Blackberry or a MiFi and it's been fantastic and the best internet tablet on the market.
      MobileAdmin
    • RE: RIM BlackBerry PlayBook becomes first tablet certified for U.S. government

      @Eric1968
      So your idea of an "All in One" stand alone unit is one that you type with your thumbs? Hmmmm....iPadders always rationalizing to the end. LAWL
      Fritzpk
  • RE: RIM BlackBerry PlayBook becomes first tablet certified for U.S. government

    Playbook just increased my work productivity ten fold. As well, I can send emails from my work email which is a secure server. In android and ipad, i could receive work emails but could not send it. I'm a loyal bb user and I will be loyal forever!!!! By the way, RIM, love the new update in 1.07!!! You guys show me you're always continuously improving!!! Playbook live!
    inahborra
    • RE: RIM BlackBerry PlayBook becomes first tablet certified for U.S. government

      @inahborra
      welcome to the playbook world.
      augustus_rome