RIM buys interface talent for PlayBook

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RIM buys interface talent for PlayBook

Hopes the Swedes can out-style Apple.

Research in Motion has acquired Swedish user interface (UI) maker The Astonishing Tribe (TAT) in an effort to improve the look and feel of its PlayBook and smartphones.

The company, which specialised in mobile technology, had delivered user interfaces for Sony Ericsson, Google, Samsung, music-sharing application Spotify, PayPal, Fujitsu and Asus amongst others.

The 180 strong TAT team will put their talent to task on the BlackBerry PlayBook and smartphone platforms, RIM's chief technology officer, David Yach said on the company's blog.

"For those who don't know, TAT is renowned for their innovative mobile user interface (UI) designs and has a long history of working with mobile and embedded technology," wrote Yach.

Wall Street expectations for RIM's PlayBook were steadily growing, with analysts confident that its QNX operating system sits well with carriers and customers.

Sales estimates for its PlayBook have ranged between one to three million for next financial year.

RIM notched up PlayBook wins in Canada ahead of the device's release. However unlike in former times, it was increasingly likely to face competition in the enterprise from Apple.

This week it was revealed that US banking giant JP Morgan would break corporate tradition and provide all its global investment bankers with Apple's iPad.

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