Average review score based on 108 user reviews
of customers recommend this product
RIM's answer to the iPad has been long awaited, and now I've used it for a week my intial excitement has unfortunately waned.
Don't get me wrong, the hardware in the PlayBook is top notch. Where other companies deliberate ship their devices with rubbish cameras, forcing you to upgrade a few months later, RIM have honestly packed the PlayBook with top spec hardware, two HD cameras, and a standard micro-HDMI port to connect easily to any HD tv.
However, using the device for just a few days makes it clear that this is a work in progress and RIM have rushed it to market. It's seriously lacking in apps and features, and unfortunately the software is very buggy.
For something marketed as a business tablet, there are no apps on there to let you do business. No e-mail app, no calendar app, no contacts app. You can pair it with a BlackBerry phone via Bluetooth but it's painfully slow and unreliable, and if you don't have a BlackBerry, you don't get e-mail, calendar, contacts, or even 'memopad'.
So what is the tablet good for? Browsing is good with a full Flash enabled browser (I used mine to watch ITV Player, 4oD and Demand5 on YouTube which are blocked in the iPad YouTube app) but Flash on the PlayBook is one of the bug riddled features. It's good for playing videos and you can connect to your HDTV.
There's also a handful of fun games to play and more to buy from the app store. But don't be fooled into thinking it'd be great for long train journeys or flights because the battery life is absolutely pitiful.
There's also other features sorely missing - no Skype, no MSN/Yahoo chat clients... RIM has promised software updates that will improve the tablet (and we're promised it will soon be running Android apps!) but when you consider how their track record, and how they've left previous devices like the BlackBerry Storm to rot when they haven't been hugely successful, I'm not holding my breath for the PlayBook.
The worst thing is they've aligned their prices with the iPad. I'd have thought if you're trying to overtake the market leader, you should not only improve on their product, but undercut the price. RIM are offering a less capable tablet than the iPad but demanding the same price for Apple's premium product - and it just isn't worth it. When the iPad3 comes out, I'll probably sell up and switch to Apple.
I had been led to believe that this playbook was one of the better ones to purchase for a young teenager. Although my grandson does not have a blackberry phone as yes I thought this playbook would be compatable with the phone that he currently has. Unfortunately since purchasing the playbook we have been unable to bluetooth songs from any mobile phone that does not appear to be a Blackberry. We can also not access Google Play to enable the download of many of the games that he would like. Had I been aware of the restrictions on Blackberry playbooks, I would have looked for another model. I have a Nexus myself and find against the Blackberry that this is a much more easy playbook for downloading/bluetoothing music and downloading games with relative ease. I would not recommend the Blackberry playbook to anyone who does not already have a Blackberry phone.