BlackBerry-Maker RIM Purchases TAT UI Design Squad

Rat, a tat-tat! RIM buys TAT! Not the most glamorous of headlines, but it's true. TAT, otherwise known as The Astonishing Tribe, a UI and design company that has become quite popular recently. They were known for their work on the first Android interface that appeared on T-Mobile's G1, and now they've moved on to other projects that are making waves.

But actually, those projects may be halted, put on hold, or wrapped into projects at Research in Motion. RIM is best known for the BlackBerry handset and platform, but recently, the company has been viewed as falling behind when it comes to UI design. Even BlackBerry OS 6 isn't quite up to snuff when compared to more advanced Android or iOS builds, but maybe the purchase of TAT will change that up, possibly in time for the introduction of the PlayBook tablet.

It remains to be seen how long it will take for TAT to integrate into RIM's workflow, but given how quickly the mobile realm is moving, the sooner the better. Here's RIM's full statement on the acquisition.

Today we are pleased to confirm plans for The Astonishing Tribe (TAT) team to join Research In Motion (RIM). We’re excited that the TAT team will be joining RIM and bringing their talent to the BlackBerry PlayBook and smartphone platforms.

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. TAT focuses on delivering great user experiences, from a design, technology, and usability perspective. Their design technology is used today in a variety of industries including the consumer electronics and automotive sectors. Examples of TAT’s UI designs and concepts can be viewed on their web site at

– David Yach, Chief Technology Officer at RIM
Tags:  BlackBerry, RIM, tat