Categorized | Blackberry, Featured, QNX, Tablet News

Hands on with the Blackberry Playbook tablet

After months of hype, reviewers are getting their hands on RIM's BlackBerry PlayBook - and to say the reviews are mixed would be something of an understatement.

Good news first. The PlayBook appears to be a well designed and well engineered bit of kit, with reviewers including InformationWeek's Eric Zeman praising its "strong lines, attractive and comfortable-to-hold matte finish, and good weight and size". Zeman also praised the operating system - forget clunky BlackBerries of old; the PlayBook is "fluid, fast and fun" with a modern, attractive operating system. But that's not enough for him to recommend it. Zeman has encountered the same issue that other reviews have criticised: the PlayBook lacks some key features.

"It's what's running behind the glass that disappoints," Engadget's Tim Stevens says, pointing out that you don't get an email or calendar application if you don't pair the PlayBook with a BlackBerry mobile phone. "The hardware looks and feels great but isn't being served by the software."

Jonathan Geller of Boy Genius Report has similar sentiments. "The hardware is there but the software is buggy at times, and the apps are severely lacking and almost non-existent in terms of quality." Geller also points out that the power button is "more or less useless" - it's flush with the rest of the case and very difficult to find and press.

"It's not bad", says Gizmodo, Faint praise? Yes. "It's straight-up the best seven-inch tablet out there... at the same time, I don't think anybody should buy it right now - BlackBerry user or otherwise - for at least a few months." Comparing it to a house, Gizmodo says that the foundation is solid but "it just needs some stuff built on top of it before you can decide whether or not you should move in."

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