BlackBerry PlayBook

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 31 July, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 31 July, 2011, 12:00am

If you are a fan of the BlackBerry, then you might be scratching your head when you approach its latest tablet, the PlayBook.

What made the BlackBerry so popular in the first place was its ability for users to read and write e-mails easily, well before the arrival of the smartphone. But this functionality is lost in the PlayBook. There's no sign of the customary Qwerty keyboard, and there's no 3G connectivity.

What's left is a 17.8cm tablet powered by a 1GHz dual-core processor from Texas Instruments, 1GB of RAM, between 16GB and 64GB of storage, HD graphics, two cameras (3-megapixels at the front and 5-megapixels at the rear), and Wi-fi, which runs BlackBerry's Tablet OS platform.

While BlackBerry's tablet platform isn't as mature as Apple's IOS, or Google's Android, it nevertheless offers application downloads via the BlackBerry App World which, according to the company, will soon feature Android apps, too.

The PlayBook comes with enhanced support, such as Adobe Flash and HTMLS, so you'll get the full Web experience; it supports multi-tasking, so you are able to send messages as you browse the Web or watch a film.

The user interface looks pretty easy to use, with prominent icon shortcuts and large widgets for accessing your applications, so there shouldn't be any surprises there.

Prices start at HK$3,988 (16GB) which, ironically, is less than some BlackBerry phones.

Pros: multi-tasking support, full web experience, HD graphic

Cons: no Qwerty keyboard, no 3G