Tech IT Easy: Alleged Killer Identified

Others have tried to claim the title of 'iPad Killer', notably the Samsung Galaxy Tab and Dell Streak. But none has created as much buzz and excitement as the recently announced RIM Blackberry Playbook.

The Playbook (more a reference to the American term for plan or guide than recreati
on) has some features that have become tablet standards. It has a bright 1028 x 600 pixel touch screen and no keyboard. Sometimes referred to as the Blackbook, the Blackberry tablet has a seven-inch screen (making it smaller than the iPad) with a 1GHz duo core processor, 1GB of RAM and 16 to 32GB of hard drive space. In English, that means the Playbook can certainly rival the computing power of many netbooks.

Both devises offer Wi-Fi and Bluetooth(R) connectivity, but that is about where the similarities end. iPad is undoubtedly an Internet device. Except when tethered to your computer via the proprietary Apple USB cable, all information going to or coming from the iPad is wireless. The iPad does not have a SD Card Slot, it does not have a USB access point, it does not have an HDMI out, it does not support Flash and it does not lightly fit in the palm of your hand; all of which are features of the Playbook.

Of course, iPad is not dead. Apple has the "first to market" advantage that cannot be ignored. There are millions of iPad owners with more joining ranks every day who will not easily replace their upwards of US$500 devices for a new tablet in the near future. Another distinct advantage of the iPad (like its sister iPhone) is the App Store. Apple invented the phrase "there's an app for that" with good reason. Their App Store is unparalleled in diversity and size. In contrast, Blackberry's App World, in a word, sucks. The range of apps is few and the quality is sometimes lacking. Further, some apps will crash your precious 'Berry. These very serious problems would need to be addressed to make the Playbook a serious contender to the iPad.

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