Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Blackberry Playbook - Best Value Business Tablet?

Research in Motion (RIM), the company that makes the Blackberry Playbook and Blackberry Smartphones, yesterday announced pending updates to both their smartphone OS 7 and the software update to their Playbook QNX Operating System to OS2.0.

The Playbook update is due in mid-February and is supposedly dealing with a number of issues with the current OS. This update will include a native email client on the device which has been cited as one of the main reasons for the tablets failure to compete with the likes of the Apple iPad and rival Android OS tablets.

Blackberry Playbook
Another main issue, which has certainly resulted in the slow uptake of the Blackberry Playbook, is the lack of Apps available for the device, a glaring example being no native Twitter App. The App Developers have been drawn to iOS and Android tablets for the market share that they hold and this has left RIM out in the cold. However this may be about to change.

In an attempt to get the Blackberry Playbook into the hands of the consumer, RIM have dramatically reduced the price which is now on sale in the UK for as little as £169 for the 16GB version. Many have claimed that this is the price point which would have been better suited from the launch of the Playbook, however one thing has never been in doubt about the Blackberry tablet and that is its power and capability .

The forthcoming update to OS 2.0 is also set to include Blackberry Runtime which will allow Apps designed for Googles Android OS to run on the Blackberry Playbook. This will dramatically increase the number of applications and therefore functionality of the Playbook and even make the £169 price-tag look thoroughly appealing to both the business and consumer markets.

When you consider the hardware, a portable 7in screen, multi-tasking, flash support, and 1080p HDMI output, along with the price point of comparable tablets (ranging between £299 and £399), the Blackberry Playbook may just capture peoples attention and be talked about in a more positive fashion (something RIM could really do with).

RIM have been slated in the recent past over the delays to new devices, Operating Systems and Updates, but if they get this one right it may not only appease some frustrated existing customers but also attract a lot of new ones.

The Blackberry Playbook OS 2.0 update is due on the 17th February 2012.
The Blackberry Playbook 16GB is currently priced at £169 at The Carphone Warehouse, Dixons, Curry's and PC World.

Blackberry Playbook User Guide
Blackberry Playbook Video Demo
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