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Android App Player for PlayBook leaked

Beta version of App Player leaked, provides Android apps and email client

Although Blackberry has long promised that their PlayBook tablet will include Android App functionalities, we were less than enthused to discover that it wasn't available upon the tablet’s launch. RIM did announce that the App Player would be coming sometime this summer but so far nothing has popped up.

Thankfully that could be set to change soon, as the folks over at managed to get their hands on a beta version of the Android App Player. Apparently the player, which emulates the Android OS environment, was hidden in an earlier released PlayBook update posted by Blackberry. The player is still in its infant stages though and Blackberry has stated that:

“We recommend that users refrain from downloading and installing this software since it is outdated and non-functional in many respects”.

While it’s definitely expected that Blackberry wouldn’t endorse an unofficial release, the leaked emulator does have some pressing issues. For starters, the player doesn’t include a dedicated back button, only supports Android Gingerbread apps, and some users have faced difficulties in actually getting Android apps onto the PlayBook. Furthermore, some PlayBook owners have encountered an issue where their tablet enters a “coma” mode and requires a hard reset, but these are all pretty much expected with unofficial beta releases.

For users able to handle the wait for an official release, it’s probably better to avoid installing the beta App Player. However, if you’re the risky type and don’t mind getting your hands dirty than the .bar file can be found among the source links below. Of course you’ll need to side-load the files onto your PlayBook, but that’s probably the last thing you’ll need to worry about when it comes to this release. And after all, finally being able to send emails from your PlayBook might just be worth all the trouble.


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Omar Qudsi, 2011-07-27 (Update: 2012-05-26)