BlackBerry PlayBook Launch

The 7-inch tablet from Research In Motion (RIM) hits the shelves in the US today. Here’s a quick roundup of the likes and dislikes from those who have tried out the shipping version of the BlackBerry PlayBook.

RIM PlayBookThere’s a lot to like about the PlayBook, but there’re also plenty of frustrations out there from those who’ve had the privilege of playing with the PlayBook. The general feel seems to be that the PlayBook has the potential to be something great – just that it’s not quite complete at the moment.

Already behind the iPad 2 and other Android tablets in terms of launch date, my feel is that RIM wants to get the hardware out as soon as possible before the specs get old – even though the software isn’t quite as ready yet.

RIM PlayBookDare I compare that with an evolutionary release of the iPad 2 with bigger steps only to be expected for the upcoming iPad 3?

With such stiff competition in the tablet market, it is no wonder these slate-makers are rolling off their products as soon as possible. In all honesty, I do believe RIM will sort out the grouses that reviewers have complained about, but the question is whether consumers are willing to fork out the dough to buy what’s beginning to be perceived as an unfinished product, that is only going to be made complete after a few more months – if ever.

RIM PlayBookPerhaps, RIM should have launched it at a discounted price – you know, an early bird discount – to entice consumers and grab market share. Given that the hardware is fabulous, the discount may have worked to convince consumers to buy first and wait out for the software to catch up.

At any rate, below is a quick round-up of the likes and dislikes from people who has played with the PlayBook so far. Prices for the 16, 32 and 64-gigabyte models in the US are $500, $600, and $700 respectively.

Likes Dislikes Mitigation
Fabulous display, and user interface Tiny recessed power button difficult to find and press Nothin’ much can be done about this – but do I care?
Sleek:
10mm / 0.4 inch thick 

Light:
0.9 lbs / 425 g

No native email, messenger, contacts and calendar Need to be Bluetooth tethered via a BlackBerry smartphone to access these. 

Native support could be added later on

Lightning fast processor No 3G connection 3G version in summer 

4G version end 2011

Impressive multi-tasking Small repository of Apps (~3,000) Compatibility with selected Android apps to be introduced later, plus build-up of PlayBook specific apps.
Supports Flash and HTML5 No video chat Video chat app to be released later.

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2 Responses to “BlackBerry PlayBook Launch”

  1. […] days prior to its official launch in the US on April 19, a special preview was held in a BlackBerry PlayBook Bus in Singapore on April 15. Two […]

  2. […] Apart from the 4G LTE connectivity and CPU speed-up, the hardware for the new PlayBook remains the same – which is a testimony of how advanced it was to begin with when the original PlayBook was launched last year. […]

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