Enhancements to BlackBerry Bridge for Business Users with BlackBerry PlayBook OS 2.0

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When the BlackBerry® Bridge™ app was first introduced, it allowed BlackBerry® PlayBook™ tablet owners with a BlackBerry smartphone to connect their devices in a unique way, with exciting potential for the future. With a BlackBerry Bridge app update for BlackBerry smartphones – and the launch of BlackBerry PlayBook tablet OS 2.0 – this functionality has been enhanced, building on the connectivity to bring a whole host of exciting new features and use cases.

Picking up where you left off

Your devices need to work together as smoothly and functionally as possible – it’s that simple. There are benefits to using both a BlackBerry tablet and a BlackBerry smartphone to get things done, but if they can’t share information, then you’re simply crafting two separate areas of mobile work. In this sense, BlackBerry Bridge app allows these two devices to not only open the boundaries of sharing data, but allows them to become something else entirely when working together.

By opening up the BlackBerry Bridge folder on your BlackBerry PlayBook tablet, you can access the core apps on your BlackBerry smartphone, presented within the user interface of the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet. For example, when I receive a BlackBerry® Messenger (BBM™) message, I simply reach for whichever device is closer. When I’m in a coffee shop, I generally use my BlackBerry PlayBook tablet exclusively to access content that is coming in to my BlackBerry® Bold™ 9900 smartphone.

The “Open on PlayBook” feature coming with the new BlackBerry Bridge app and BlackBerry PlayBook tablet OS 2.0 allows you to view email messages, web pages, photos, and more on your tablet. Simply select the “Open on PlayBook” option from your smartphone.

Last night, as I was walking into my apartment building, I received an email containing a YouTube® video link. I simply chose “Open on PlayBook”, took my tablet out of my bag, and took it one step further by popping in the HDMI cable hooked up to my TV to watch the video on my high definition TV. The same use case applies whether you’re viewing and editing documents or browsing company web sites.

  • “Open on PlayBook” shows up as a menu item on your BlackBerry smartphone, so you can open messages, address book entries, tasks, memos or calendar appointments on the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet
  • Opening supported attachments with the “Open on PlayBook” feature triggers the corresponding BlackBerry PlayBook tablet application, such as Adobe® Acrobat® PDF Reader, to automatically launch
  • You can also launch browser URLs on your BlackBerry PlayBook tablet using the “Open on PlayBook” feature from your BlackBerry smartphone

Exploring the new Remote Control functionality

At this point we arrive at my personal favorite: the remote control feature of the new BlackBerry Bridge app for BlackBerry PlayBook tablet OS 2.0. Using this feature, I can use my BlackBerry smartphone to control my BlackBerry PlayBook tablet, including bezel gestures for multitasking. This functionality extends to the keyboard . Lately I’ve been taking notes in meetings on my BlackBerry PlayBook tablet but typing using the keyboard on my BlackBerry Bold smartphone. This way, those around me can view the meeting notes on the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet or a large screen that is connected to my tablet as they’re being taken, while I sit back and type them quickly from where I’m sitting.

Here what you can do with Remote Control:

  • Supports BlackBerry PlayBook tablet bezel gestures using your BlackBerry smartphone
  • Vertical scrolling
  • Drag-lock
  • Right, left, and middle mouse click emulation
  • Dedicated Presenter Mode

Remote Control really shines in a business setting when it’s combined with an HDMI cable to hook your BlackBerry PlayBook tablet into a projector or big screen TV. Presentations take on a futuristic feel for me when I’m using my smartphone to circle examples that are being projected from my BlackBerry PlayBook tablet, all as I walk around the room not tied to any device on the conference table. Additionally, when in Presenter Mode, you’re able to split your BlackBerry smartphone screen into “Back” and “Next” buttons. Your presentation appears on the BlackBerry smartphone screen, your speaking notes on the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet, and control of the entire scenario rests in your hands. Clearly these devices work well together, and applied to countless use cases, are changing the way organizations are doing business.

Note: BlackBerry Bridge Remote Control and Presenter Mode require the combination of a BlackBerry PlayBook tablet running BlackBerry PlayBook tablet OS 2.0 and BlackBerry Bridge v2.0.

Additional Enhancements

The new functionality certainly doesn’t stop here – there’s more:

  • Copy and paste within BlackBerry Bridge applications on your BlackBerry PlayBook tablet
  • Select a different font size for messages in the BlackBerry Bridge Messages application
  • Connect your BlackBerry PlayBook tablet to the Internet through BlackBerry Bridge without having an active Wi-Fi® connection. In this scenario, both work and personal email will function normally. (Please note that this feature needs to be supported by your carrier.)

Consider new ways of accomplishing tasks and work via the functionality provided by updates to BlackBerry Bridge. There’s a lot to be excited about!

How do you use BlackBerry Bridge with BlackBerry PlayBook tablet OS 2.0? Share in the comments!

About Luke Reimer

@Luke_Reimer is an Enterprise Marketing Manager at BlackBerry helping to design, launch, and manage enterprise marketing programs - particularly concerning content across digital mediums. Beyond spreading BlackBerry goodness in enterprise communities, you can find Luke cooking up a storm, out on his motorcycle (when Canadian weather allows), or digging into a good science fiction book.

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