When we last heard rumors about RIM’s plans for future BlackBerry OS releases, the idea was supposedly to release BlackBerry OS 6.1 next, with plans for BBOS 7.0 to arrive sometime towards the end of the year, heralding the integration of QNX from the PlayBook into the company’s smartphone line. According to the latest rumor, however, what we’ve been calling 6.1 will be released as 7.0, and any QNX-based phones will have to wait for a future release.
Under the rumored Highlander project, RIM would pick-and-choose the best features from BBOS 6.1 and the PlayBook’s QNX to create something new, presumably QNX at its core, but holding onto enough of 6.1 to not make it feel foreign to BlackBerry fans. What PocketBerry suggests will happen now, is that instead of releasing 6.1 and 6.1 Lite (for existing devices), there will be 7.0 and 6.1 instead.
Just from a numbering standpoint, this sounds like a much neater plan, as throwing in that Lite designation could easily lead to customer confusion (would a layman expect the full version of 6.0 to be more or less advanced than 6.1 Lite?). Keeping with a linear numbered progression should make things easier for everyone involved. Especially if BBOS 6.1 is as significant a step up from 6.0 as we’ve heard it may be, it only makes sense to bump it up to the next integer, and a slimmed-down version with a decimal increase is logical as an upgrade for devices currently running 6.0.
Presumably, were this all true, a QNX-based BlackBerry smartphone would be at least version 8.0, whenever it does come out.