Blackberry Playbook not the smallest Tablet PC but an excellent one

True, Blackberry Playbook may not be the smallest tablet PC in the world, but definitely it is a far cry from iPad 2’s size, its nearest competitor.


It looks gigantic when placed side by side to Playbook.

And in this day and age where small means power and value, Playbook captures the attention of many tablet PC.

Don’t let the size fool you, the device still packs a punch and comes fully loaded.

The Smallest Tablet PC: So What?

A number of critics have called the Playbook a mere imitation to its forebears. But for those who got their hands on the product when it was revealed, that is not exactly true. If they can only look past the size and look of the smallest tablet PC, they will discover it is packed with incredible features and worth-loving functions.

But let us talk about how it looks like first. It is difficult not to notice Blackberry Playbook. At 7 inches, it beats Apple’s iPad, Motorola’s Xoom, and HP’s TouchPad in terms of size. It is small enough to fit in to any journal, purse, or very small bag. It also weighs less at 14 ounces. It features a pitch-black finish, which is very common among Blackberry products such as their smartphones.

smallest tablet pc, blackberry playbook 32GB

Like iPad 2, it boasts of a multi-touch interface. This means to navigate, one has to simply scroll and swipe. But there is something different. It does not have a Home button. Instead, on top of the device are the power, the volume, as well as the Play/Pause buttons. To wake the Playbook, tap the bottom and swipe your finger all the way up.

Playbook does not have the highest resolution among tablet PCs. The crown actually belongs to Motorola Xoom at 1280 by 800. However, because of its diminutive screen, Playbook has the capacity to showcase images and videos in more stellar quality, with richer colors, contrast, brightness, and shadows.

Fortunately, the vivid rendering of images of the smallest tablet PC is carried over to its dual camera. Images and videos are so clear it can put iPad 2, which is known for its video chat capability, to shame. It features 3MP for the front and 5MP for the back—both HD. If these are not enough, Playbook possesses an HDMI port for excellent video output; and to ensure too that users will not miss out any snapshot, Playbook is packed with 1GB RAM and offers three storage capacities: 16 GB, 32 GB, and 64 GB.

A number of people have definitely questioned the fact that Blackberry did not settle for the more common operating systems, such as Android, considering that Apple is running iOS, one of the most popular in the market today. But Research in Motion (RIM) knows better how to play the game.

The smallest tablet PC runs using Blackberry Tablet OS, which is based on QNX. Only a few know that it has been around for 30 years or even before Linux came about. Simply put, its core operating system spells reliability and tried-and-tested performance even for the most demanding applications. This also explains why users do not need to reboot Playbook or close the rest of the applications if the one crashes. Further, the operating system allows the tablet PC to function very smoothly. 

smallest tablet pc, blackberry playbook 32GBThe operating system is also responsible for the very fast browsing capabilities of the smallest tablet PC. Many can even attest it works more quickly than Motorola’s Xoom, and unlike iPad 2, Blackberry Playbook supports Flash, allowing users to fully enjoy multimedia such as videos and dynamic websites.

Multitasking is not an issue with the smallest tablet PC. Some tablet PCs like iPad 2 need to compel their users to press some buttons before they can open or run applications; but Playbook can stream videos, open e-mails, and browse the Internet all at the same time.

Blackberry has an inherent 3G capability, though RIM still needs to officially launch its 3G version (complete with a carrier). In the meantime, to browse the Internet, users can utilize Wi-Fi networks, which can be easily picked up by Playbook. It is also compatible with Bluetooth.

Playbook does not offer a lot of apps and accessories; but what they have are basic, fundamental, and well-thought-out. For example, the mono headset blocks background noise for more ergonomic listening. Majority of the sleeves have open parts to allow users to attach cables and other media devices without removing Playbook from the case. 

What Is There to Worry?

So far, there are only three things to be wary about. First, its e-mail capabilities still leave so much to be desired. While some tablet PCs have native e-mails, Playbook does not. This is ironic since Blackberry has always been known for its highly advanced e-mail technologies and innovation. For users to open and access their e-mail accounts, they need to sync the device to their BB smartphone using Blackberry Bridge. Otherwise, they have to go through the browser to open their webmail platform.

There may also be some issues with the battery. At only 5-plus hours, it does not last as long as other tablet PCs such as iPad 2. Moreover, since the batteries cannot be removed, there is no chance users can settle for the more affordable after-market ones.

Then there is the price. Though it is not the priciest, it is not the cheapest either. And with the potential release of its 3G and perhaps 4G versions, the price will most likely increase. 

Smallest Tablet PC: It Is Still Worth Every Penny

Despite its flaws, Blackberry Playbook still possesses all the attributes to charm not just business but also regular tablet PC users. It is backed by technologies that have been known to be the most secured and centralized. The operating system that supports its functions is undoubtedly superior than that found in some competitors. Who knows, too, what’s going to happen in the next few months only that the changes will only make Playbook better.

Playbook just proves the reality of one of the age-old proverbs: do not judge the book by its cover—or, in this case, size.