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Blackberry PlayBook & Apple iPad: No Comparison, And There Shouldn’t Be

by on April 24th, 2011

There was a great article posted at eWeek a few days ago that discusses why the PlayBook and iPad, both tablet computers, cannot be compared to each other.

Leading up to, and after, the launch of the Blackberry PlayBook, the device received a generally bad review from industry analysts. The negative light came mostly by comparing the PlayBook to the iPad, or that the PlayBook wasn’t the iPad, more specifically.

With the massive success of the iPad, it is almost as if the PlayBook was destined for doom from the beginning. The iPad has become the standard for tablet computing.

This failure to pay homage to Vision of Steve Jobs and his belief in what should constitute a great tablet is striking many tablets. But the PlayBook is getting worse than most because it’s the most unlike an iPad of all the tablets.


Using some humor, the author perfectly summarizes why the Blackberry PlayBook has had such terrible reviews and why the two devices cannot be compared to eachother:

…when the PlayBook arrived I was actually expecting something else, in this case a genuine Virginia ham that was supposed to arrive in time for Easter from a smokehouse in Surrey, Va. It turns out that the FedEx delivery got here first, but the PlayBook comes in a box that clearly can’t hold a ham. It also doesn’t look like it tastes as good as a ham, it doesn’t have a brown sugar glaze and I don’t have to warm it in the oven at 300 F.

But wait. Why is it that I’m comparing the PlayBook against a Virginia ham? Well, why not? It makes at least as much sense as comparing the PlayBook against an iPad, except that the iPad doesn’t taste as good as the hams that Sam Edwards makes either.


The article then continues with some of the differences between the PlayBook and the iPad, and why those differences don’t really matter because, after all, the PlayBook was not designed as an “iPad killer”. It is, instead, its own tablet, designed for different users and different purposes.

If you’re looking for a great Sunday ready, check out this article.


[Via Daring Fireball]

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  • The problem is that RIM likes to compare them so it’s inevitable that the comparison will be made. Having used one, I think the biggest issue RIM needs to overcome is the consensus that the Playbook was released prematurely without having what many consider “core” functionality (i.e. native mail, contacts, calendar, etc) included. This is something Apple would never do, nothing gets released to the public until the “core” functionality is completed and they can then focus on adding new or non-core functionality at a later date. It seems that with the Playbook, RIM has a lot of missing features in the “coming soon” pile that probably should have been in the shipping product on day one.

  • xyber

    If it is not meant to compete with the iPad then it shouldn’t be called the “Play” book in the first place.

    Plus I echo Anthony’s point that RIM likes to compare it to the iPad, just look at the number of video comparisons they have done with the iPad 1. I think RIM is sitting on the fence now, they’re really not sure how the Playbook is gonna turn out. If it’s successful in competing against the iPad then they’ll say that it was meant to compete with the iPad, if it’s not then they’ll just say that it wasn’t meant to compete with the iPad.

  • Anonymous

    Each device should be sold to a different market. The playbook is not meant for a consumer market as it works best combined with a Blackberry which, despite Apple’s attempts otherwise, will remain the primary business communications tool for a long time to come. The iPad is not meant for a business market as it’s closed ecosystem doesn’t allow it to be completely controlled but an IT department.

    Different devices for different markets. Is too bad RIM doesn’t do a better job at this and it’s too bad all the critics attempt to do so.

    (actually played with a playbook over the weekend. I liked it actually but wouldn’t get one unless I had a Blackberry).

  • Fastrace24

    Gary did a great job on Global news the other day. Nice work… To bad they only captioned you as “tech blogger.”

    I thought it looked very pro… Well done!

  • Thanks man 🙂

    The interview was longer than what was shown, but that’s TV for ya. The only
    interesting clip was leading into commercials, where I said RIM was being
    ‘called out’ for not innovating.

  • Shahram

    Had the playbook and gave it back. Terrible piece of technology. Dead pixels and freezing