Let’s examine BB10/QNX and see what RIM can get from this OS aside from something new for the BlackBerry phones and the BlackBerry PlayBook.
Well. Let’s start with the playbook and QNX itself. RIM needed a modern OS foundation to move forward into the new future of mobile computing and it found it in its acquisition of QNX. Now QNX didn’t come fully ready to go on day one but needed a few years of development to grow from a rock solid OS in embedded devices and so on to being ready for consumer prime time applications. Now this may seem like an eternity in the modern-day mobile market but let’s not forget Apple bought NeXT in 1998 to provide itself with an OS for the future. It took until about 2003 with its Mac OS X Panther release to be fully complete, stable and ready for prime time consumers and professionals. Yes I know about Jaguar but at that time a lot of pro and consumer users were still rocking OS9. Once Mac OS X was complete it took until mid 2007 for it to be ready for the mobile environment and until 2010 for a tablet version to be ready. And let’s not kid ourselves, the iPad could have come sooner but SJ waited till the OS was just right and with iPhone sales going well, they had time.
Now, back to RIM. They have only owned QNX since mid 2010 and if you look at what’s coming in PlayBook OS 2, I would say that this is some amazing high level software development in a very short span of time. The OS itself has grown from an amazing foundation to an amazing user experience in 2 years! Hats off to the RIM software engineers indeed.
So, BB10/QNX. Great for tablets, should be great on BlackBerry smart phones but what else? Where else can QNX become a strategic weapon for RIM to enhance the value of the BlackBerry brand and entice users with integrated BlackBerry QNX solutions?
Automotive. With QNX as a mobile platform a person who owns a BB10 phone or a PlayBook would have (I expect) unlimited options for integrating services form the car to the device and vice versa. It could be amazing. Lock and unlock. Set temp controls. Ignition and shut off. Flash and honk to find lost vehicle and so on. The there’s bridge. To bridge my BlackBerry to the car, not just the head unit/stereo/nav but to the car itself. The possibilities are so cool. Fleet cars bridged and up loading way points, MPG, arrival times and so much more and all for a way lower cost than the specialized systems in place today doing these tasks. Secure ODB access on your BlackBerry BB10 device! Setup a trip on your BlackBerry phone, upload it to the car and have it adjust things based on real live parameters, ETA’s, bookings and appointments. Imaging your car and phone working together to suggest you move back an appointment 1 hour because traffic is bad and you’re not making time. Or your phone automatically setting an appointment for a service call based on your cars live mileage. So many possibilities. Or Connected with BBM for updates based on location and…..
Router/modem. RIM could take things way beyond simple plug and play. Think of highly advanced zero config networking and sharing. Store your BlackBerry ID on your router for advanced, BB encrypted over the internet file and screen sharing. BlackBerry encrypted VPN like services. So many ideas and abilities could come from it. You pull in the driveway and your QNX car connects to your QNX router and? The possibilities are endless. Let’s explore some more.
QNX printer. Plug in power, connect to network, print from any BB10 device. Nice. Great for business needs. Even print securely at the office or home from anywhere.
QNX set-top box. Like an Apple TV or Google TV box. All nicely integrated into the QNX/BB10 ecosystem. Stream audio/photo/video and files to it from all BB10 devices, using Bridge remote! Hook into BlackBerry Protect for bookmarks and so on, using a built-in Bridge remote-controlled browser, with a better name than browser. It could be a great little presentation tool as well, maybe with a BlackBerry battery slot for emergencies and on the go usage.
QNX media server. High capacity networked hard drive with media server built-in. Just load up with content and stream to your BB10 devices, local and over the internet. BlackBerry ID protected as well. Very cool. I know they already exist but one custom-made and tailored to our BB environment would be great.
QNX networked home thermostat. Well there are a lot of possibilities here. Fully controlled by BB10 devices using your BlackBerry ID. Display detailed usage and cost breakdown information on your TV using the (talked about above) QNX set-top box. Live over the internet interactivity. BBM connected for the family? Auto settings for when family members arrive home and connect to your QNX router or using NFC. Lots of great possibilities in this one.
QNX connected appliances. With a few NFC tags your shopping list could almost fill itself. Your fridge detects no NFC tag for milk inside and it’s put to your shopping list on all QNX/BB10 devices. Thermometer in the roast in a QNX oven detects the temp of your roast, alerts you on any BB10 device signed into your BlackBerry ID so you can adjust oven temp, turn the oven off, enable rotisserie or whatever is needed. Door locks controlled with NFC, Bridge remote, WiFi connect with BlackBerry ID. TV Box could auto record any shows the user has set to watch when user leaves the house, automatically. Home irrigation systems, outdoor and indoor. Fish tanks, pet food feeders and pet doors. Baby monitors with streaming video and so on. Apartment, condo and home intercom systems with full video chat, security gate controls, door control and all. That’s a good list already and there can be so much more
QNX equipped home exercise equipment. Track workouts, weight, results and more.
QNX watch. Analog face with a digital back screen. Call display, ringer mute and maybe a few other toys. Why not? (There’s one online now, looks nice. 60 bucks. I’m going for it soon, ill let you know if it’s any good in a future post. :))
Well I could go on and on with this but I think the point is now made. QNX is a proven winner as an embedded OS and if RIM use it for all its worth it can provide a lot of value back to the company for many years to come
So, let’s pull it all together shall we. You pull in your driveway in your QNX car, the garage door opens automatically and you drive in and park. As you do your BB10 phone connects to your home network and the magic happens. The door to the house unlocks automatically to ease your entry. The thermostat springs to life ensuring your preferred temperature is set. The coffee maker starts up to be ready for your after work drink. The TV turns on and goes to your preferred program for that day and time, or queues up a recording that is waiting for you from when you were out. The oven turns on to be ready for the meal you selected to make while at work. When you enter the house the door auto locks behind you unless another user is detected on the system still outside, or whatever rule the owner has set. The car checks online for system updates, notices from the manufacturer and so on and relays them to the users BB10 device for consideration while parked at home. The rowing machine you just bought beeps your BB10 device to remind you its workout day, in a friendly way with a graph of the last weeks results as motivation. It goes on and on and its great, its amazing and its very possible.
Yes, some or lots of these things are already in use today without QNX but with QNX at the helm, we BlackBerry users would be in tech heaven. After all, this isn’t a blog about tech, it’s a blog about BlackBerry tech, and its good tech indeed. Let’s all get excited for the future.
Chat soon. Thanks for reading. Hope to see you next time.
All pictures are random grabs from the internet and are only used for reference purposes.
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