The coolest most useless product we’ve ever tested… Blackberry Playbook
By Troy Saxton-Getty
We’ve been fans or Research In Motion (RIM) since the early days of the RIM 950, as corporate technology leaders we’ve also been responsible for deploying well over 10,000 RIM devices to the corporate citizens we’ve supported. RIM has a track record lasting well over a decade of delivering amazing and incredibly useful devices, until now. Something big has changed at RIM, something that continues to drive their loyal and long term fans away.
When the Blackberry Playbook finally shipped, we picked one up hoping to see RIM getting back into the competitive game, we even gave them some slack for releasing early without several key capabilities being natively on the Playbook which everyone else had out of the box.
Way back in the early days of Playbook we heard their Co-CEO say they would be delivering a mail, contact and calendar client from RIM later this “summer” and with that we cut them a bit more slack. Well, summer is nearly over, kids are going back to school, people are buying tablet computers but I can’t find one technology friend who is buying a Blackberry Playbook for personal use, or to deploy in a company as a connected device. Why?? Because it is the coolest most useless product we’ve ever tested. We love this thing, in fact, we would be willing to say, if it had an open app ecosystem and a mail, calendar and contact client, it might even be our favorite, but it doesn’t and for that it is useless to most everyone buying tablets. Even the few folks we know who bought Playbook have either returned the Playbook or turned it into a digital picture frame. We all joke that every once in a while, we check for a native or 3rd party email, calendar and contact client. People come to these devices for those basic capabilities that untether us from the PC and stay for the extra stuff, you’ve got it all wrong RIM, but worse, you think you have it all right. You are better off putting a big rubber case on it and selling them to kids.
Every day at the shop, faithfully we pick it up, turn it on, open the AppWorld app hoping to see either a native productivity client or one from a 3rd party. Out of the thousands of people we interact with, we only know one likes his Playbook, because he is one of the few who still has a Blackberry mobile phone, if you do, the product will sync up and give the mail, calendar and contact view the phone has natively… Even then, my one Playbook friend tells me he is envious of the Apple, Android and even Microsoft App stores because the Playbook has a small collection of nearly useless apps for the serious or even recreational tablet user.
RIM, you guys are intentionally or unintentionally making yourselves irrelevant in the competitive landscape, the Blackberry Playbook remains the coolest most useless product we’ve ever tested, what a uselessly cool product!
Come on guys, at least make an effort.. let the developers of AMail or one of the other email clients at least have their product available to us instead of blocking them on AppWorld… Someone wise once told me “showing up is half the success battle”, well, you are not even showing up….