BlackBerry maker RIM has bought Swedish design company The Astonishing Tribe as it looks to enhance the look and feel of its devices.

With the PlayBook tablet close to launch, RIM is aware that it may need to revisit its designs for the BlackBerry OS.

TAT is a mobile user interface specialist, and will be aiming to give the BlackBerry devices an overhaul.

Innovative

"TAT is renowned for their innovative mobile user interface (UI) designs and has a long history of working with mobile and embedded technology," RIM's chief technology officer, David Yach, wrote on a company blog announcing the acquisition.

"We're excited that the TAT team will be joining RIM and bringing their talent to the BlackBerry PlayBook and smartphone platforms."

The amount that RIM spent on TAT has not been revealed, but it serves to underline the emphasis that the company is putting on keeping up with the likes of Apple and, of course, Microsoft following the revamped Windows Phone 7 release.

Via Reuters