About Your BlackBerry PlayBook - dummies

About Your BlackBerry PlayBook

By Corey Sandler

The About panel is your BlackBerry PlayBook’s information panel. It actually has five pages; you can get to more data by tapping the down arrow.

  • On the General tab, you see the BlackBerry ID associated with the tablet, along with its serial number. Also listed here is the OS version installed; these three bits of information are very important for any calls for support you make to the manufacturer. You can also see the number of applications, music tracks, and videos installed in the tablet’s memory.


  • The Hardware tab has one other important bit of information: the PIN associated with your PlayBook. You may need to locate this number to register some applications and for some communications tasks. On this tab you get a report of the total amount of storage and memory in the device. You’ll also see the amount of free storage and free memory.

    If the level of free storage or memory is very low, the tablet is likely to slow down or even freeze. You can’t increase the amount of total memory within the BlackBerry PlayBook (at least in its initial version); all models come with 1GB of RAM.

    Similarly, the included storage can’t be expanded: you can buy models with 16, 32, or 64GB. If your tablet is slow to respond or begins to act flaky (that’s a highly technical term), shut down unneeded apps to expand the amount of free memory. Similarly, clear out unneeded stored files to open up some electronic breathing room.

    The last bit of information on the Hardware tab tells you the boot time, which is the last time your PlayBook was turned on. This time is different from the last time your PlayBook was brought back to life from a deep sleep. Most users don’t need to turn off their tablet very often and they only reboot to install an update to the operating system or certain apps.

  • The OS tab gives you more details on the specific build of the operating system in your tablet. Included is information about Flash player and AIR. You can’t adjust any settings here, but you may be asked to consult this page if you call Research in Motion for assistance with a support issue.

  • When you tap the Network tab you see some of the specifics of the wireless transceiver. IPv4 and the more current IPv6 are essential elements to identify your tablet to the Internet. The MAC address is used by a WiFi router to conduct local communication.

  • The Legal tab: the lawyers made them do it. If you read this page once, that is probably one more time than most others will bother. Oh, go ahead and make a lawyer happy.