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What Does the iPad 2 Mean for the BlackBerry PlayBook and RIM?

ipad 2

Now that Apple has finally come out and detailed the iPad 2 I know many readers are wondering what it means for RIM’s BlackBerry PlayBook. The news is still coming out but reactions are still being processed. So I thought I would ask all of our readers. What do you think of Apple’s iPad 2 announcement?

Here are some of the things we know about the iPad 2 so far:

  • It will be available March 11th – Looks like RIM might be a month after Apple on this one…
  • The iPad 2 has a dual core processor and amped up graphics – RIM can’t tout the PlayBook as the first dual core tablet anymore
  • Dual cameras on both front and back
  • Thinner than an iPhone 4 – Not really a huge deal
  • $499 price point for entry level model – I still think RIM should come in at $299… But if they must be VERY competitively priced…
  • 65,000 iPad apps… RIM has some catch up but not critical with the awesome browser
  • Built in 3G on AT&T and Verizon – RIM is not launching a internet enabled model until later. They need to get cracking on that!
  • 10 hour battery life – Hopefully RIM beats that since they have the same mAh battery size with a smaller screen.
  • HDMI out on the iPad 2 through a dongle – The PlayBook does not require a dongle which is sweet!

The PlayBook still has some sweet features and the enterprise angle on the iPad 2 but it looks like they squandered their time to launch. They really needed to beat the iPad 2 out the door but I think they can make up the lost ground. Check out the Engadget Live Blog for the iPad 2 announcements as the come.

What do you think?

36 total comments on this postSubmit your comment!
  1. RIM needs to get going and work 24/7 to get the Playbook released and look good so it blows away the Ipad 2.

  2. I’ve been saying for quite some time that PlayBook’s “window of opportunity” was between announce and iPad2 launch date. still think RIM is going to have a really hard time playing catchup, it’s all about the apps and I’ve unfortunately yet to see compelling evidence RIM can catch Apple on that front.

    That all said…my feel is iPad2 isn’t revolutionary in any way. It’s just a refresh, kinda like iPhone 3S was to iPhone 3G or 9780 is to 9700. Apple hasn’t REALLY set the bar much higher than it was already set, but iPad has ALL of the momentum in the market right now. There’s still time for Android and webOS and PlayBook to carve out their niches, but every DAY that passes without their presence in the market is a day that Apple’s tablet lead expands.

    • What do you have to say?

      I think most people are forgetting that RIM’s market is Business not consumers. Yes they have consumer fans but I feel like they are taking the time to make a product built for business. Just like their phones consumer will warm to the playbook over time, probably faster than with the phones. The other big difference is that for phones iOS was new and better, but in this case QNX is better than iOS.

  3. fck, is this a apple fan site or a Blackberry fan site? $299 for what? it takes anywhere between $180-$280 to make a playbook, how can you expect PB to sell at $299 when it does so much more than the iPad2. put down the crack pipe.

    • I’m talking about RIM making price a differentiator. Similar features for the same price against a competitor that holds 90% of the market is difficult. RIMs big differentiator is Flash right now. The more differentiators it has the better it will do and price is a big one. Ask your friends to choose between a $499 ipad 2 and a $499 playbook. That’s a much harder call than a $299 or even a $399 Playbook. That’s how RIM cornered the Curve with its value proposition.

      • Totally with you Ronen. RIM needs to be “aggressive” on price, not “competitive”. How many lemmings are now going to snap up the original iPad models now that Apple has knocked $100 off each model? Yeah, 16GB iPad in your hands right now for $399! It doesn’t MATTER to these people that PlayBook specs blow away the original, they look at the price and they look at thousands of apps and say “gotta have it”.

        IMHO, a 16GB PlayBook absolutely positively MUST retail price at right around the $300 mark. There’s still plenty of room at that price point for RIM and their retail partners to make some margin.

        Look, this summer we’re going to see a flood of Google Chrome netbooks without the price premium netbooks have right now due to the Microsoft Windows7 tax burden. Google is making a HUGE enterprise push and I gotta say having been using a Chrome cr48 for a couple months now I can see the enterprise appeal. It’s FAR more capable from an enterprise perspective than ANY tablet is ever going to be what with it’s 12″ screen, full keyboard, and i get a couple days of use from it.

        • It’s obvious that you are not in the handset manufacturing business. If you think the Playbook can sell for $300 and still maintain any type of margins for itself and retailers, you are smoking crack. This is a tablet – the components are more expensive than a smartphone in large part due to the more powerful processor and larger screen. high-end smartphones (with subsidy from the carrier on a 2 year contract) sell for $200-$300 at launch.
          Playbook will be sold through retailers (no subsidy).

          I’m sure you will agree that selling below cost is not a wise strategy for any business. Price point needs to be considered based on the competitive environment AND cost.

          Why stop at $300…hell, they should sell it for $50..or better yet, give it away for free.

          • dude….hate to break it to you but YES a tablet could sell for $300 and still make a profit. Do you seriously think all those $300 netbooks with bigger screens and windows and hard drive and all that they contained were being sold in the millions for a loss? Not.

            • different set of cost drivers for netbooks and tablets…yes, of course tablets can be produced for cheap-you can find them for $100. The hardware employed in these clones do not compare to an Ipad or the playbook.

    • Loss leader – worth it to get the market share, perhaps.

  4. Rim should have had this out before the ipad 2.

  5. Hm they said on a engadget interview it will start under 500$… I think they’ll go the 499$ way.

  6. You mentioned the browser, but some more explanation is needed there I think.

    People talk about Flash support in the context of watching video. There’s quite a bit more than that though — there are tens of thousands of free Flash apps all over the web. These are all available to the Playbook on day 1 (and apparently they’ll run very smoothly there).

    HTML5 is also a big deal in that way – there is a growing number of web apps (which include offline usage capabilities) — also available for free.

    I hope that they emphasize that: while you can buy some 60k apps from app store on ipad, you can get for free a number that’s possibly even higher than that on the playbook.

    • Does that mean all those web flash addicting games would still be there available on the playbook?
      If so, that also means there might be the capability of an accelerometer feature for online games to work with the playbook.
      My only concern is how can I install the softwares that I always use on a daily basis such as adobe photoshop and soundbooth and other essentials on my playbook.
      I don’t want to buy new software yet, I’m not ready for it.

      • It does mean that the addictive flash games will be available on the PB.

        Flash does include support for accelerometers – so if the game was developed to use the support, then I would strongly suspect that it would be usable on the PB that way.

        As far as the daily software – I’m not sure how much luck you’ll have with that. One thing that seems to be overlooked in the recent tablet madness is that (except for possible Windows tablets) a tablet can’t be a desktop or laptop replacement. They’re running different operating systems, and most non-novelty mainstream software isn’t available on those platforms. (Like photoshop, office, etc.)

  7. Developers are going to have to align the pricing on the apps they offer. I have seen several that are more expensive on Appworld vs. iworld. The one that comes to mind immediately is Angry Birds @ $0.99 versus Angry Animals @ $4.99.

  8. Letting the iPad2 come out before even the first PlayBook is a huge misstep for RIM. I don’t like Apple and I don’t own any Apple products, but from a hardware perspective the iPad2 has the same capabilities as the PlayBook in a much sexier physical package.

    RIM is betting everything on the belief that there is an “enterprise” tablet market somehow separate from the consumer market. This has yet to be seen. One big thing that most people don’t realize is that the PlayBook will not be able to do anything related to your e-mail, contacts, calendar, BBM, etc. separate of a BlackBerry phone. This is what makes it mostly nonviable as a consumer appliance. Not only will RIM have to convince you to buy and use a BlackBerry smartphone, something they have enough trouble doing already in recent times, they will then also have to convince people to buy the PlayBook. At potentially $500+ each retail, this prospect starts making the Xoom price point look somewhat reasonable.

    • Even MORE reasonable for the enterprise user (as I outlined above) is going to be the flood of cheap Chrome netbooks coming soon. Especially for a SMB that’s already using Gmail and Google Apps and such, Chrome netbooks are almost a no-brainer and FAR more functional than any tablet can hope to be.

  9. I’m really disappointed at the fact that the Ipad 2 will be out a month before the PlayBook. They’ve had so much time to get it out and they are coming in a little too late if you ask me. I think that the PlayBook is the better tablet, but most of the world doesn’t care. They are going to have a lot to prove to a lot of people.

  10. To those poor upset playbook customers I have a fact to tell ya’ll…
    1- Playbook will always be behind other tablets for the time being because it’s RIM’s first, and other beat them to the market.
    2- No body buying a playbook for software development even noticed the RANT about iPad or iPad2.
    Why? have you heard of the other pads that are on the market? NO
    Have you heard of the Samsung one? NO
    Have you heard of the several Android tablets out there? NO
    And guess what their prices are at Fry’s Electronics: $499-$850

    RIM is making a very smart move by taking it’s time at least….when it’s out the software would be ready and people can use it and they won’t feel so left behind.

  11. Spec wise the announcement was pretty disappointing I thought. Same resolution, no word on RAM or camera MPs. HD Out needs a separate dongle. No Flash (Adobe or on the Camera, Steve must really hate the word flash to leave out a Camera flash). And same old iOS which one can only assume still sports glorified pause and resume multitasking. And honestly those cover things that fold into stands etc. are so childish looking it’s not funny, possibly the worst part of the announcement was the over exposure of those ugly covers.

  12. If RIM is not selling an internet enabled playbook at initial launch then it is a huge mistake. I don’t want to be tied to another wireless carrier contract.

  13. honestly who cares??? netbooks and ipads and playbooks are all useless! Why would I spend $500 on them when I can buy an actual laptop with a better processor, video card, bigger hard drive (min 250g) and more options for the same price??

    • mobility. Don’t forget many people do many different things with their devices, so what may not seem useful to you may be very useful to others. I for one don’t wanna carry around a laptop in a hippie satchel all day. Or have the battery burning my boys when I’m watching T.V. and just wanna do some casual surfing.

  14. Ps: I think there is a typo at the 10 hour battery.. :)

  15. I think rim made stupid decisions taunting apple to beat them to market.
    Constantly bashing the year old ipad with unreleased hard/software. For the sake of arguement, I bet the ipad2 w dualcore does those html5 tests just as smooth as the playbook.. And the fact is it will be for sale beore the playbook. In other words, using the ipad to compare to was a mistake, the ipad2 is their contender at launch, and is going to devour marketshare before the playbook even becomes a reality

    I’m a little pissed that rim went around flaunting and at launch they won’t look nearly at tough. No camera flash, no microSD card (have fun recording 1080p and xfering),no notification LED, no removable battery list probably goes on, but they just happened to exclude a lot

  16. RIM didn’t taunt apple even once. It’s not that kind of company. Yes they rebutted apple’s lies but they didn’t taunt. They went about their business.

    RIM is all about enterprise and I beleive they will have great uptake for these devices.

    As usual RIM will surprise the market selling more playbooks than expected because people are ALWAYS way to pessimistic about RIM. In a year or so when RIM gets QNX on phones and has the playbook what business is going to look at apple???

    Apple’s MAc line may be doing well among consumers but businesses have shunned it— for years.

    iPhone same. Don’t mix up consumer market and business market.

    You guys say same specs but no. iPad still doesn’t give you full internet so it isn’t the same product. Give me the internest over any of apple’s apps.

    • I totally agree that RIM is all about enterprise but that is not really how they have been promoting the device. They say its enterprise class but then don’t detail how. RIM also has more than 50% of their sales going directly to consumers so their enterprise business is slowly shrinking in comparison.
      They need to dominate the consumer market too and I think they have the foundation to do it. Its all about how they execute on it. This is their chance to finally break free of all the restrictions placed by carriers and other legacy issues they have had in the past. I have seen some newer Playbook builds and I am really impressed. Still I was hoping to have it in hand before the iPad 2 was launched or even announced…

      • “RIM also has more than 50% of their sales going directly to consumers so their enterprise business is slowly shrinking in comparison.”

        I wish we had some real numbers to put to this. IS RIM’s enterprise business really shrinking? Or it just growing MUCH slower than the consumer side? I know most RIM sales growth has been overseas, is BES selling over there or is it just BIS users?

  17. Lame! I was expecting more from Apple. I think what you will find going forward is RIM matching up to spec due to QNX. It made no sense before since they didn’t need all that fire power to run the old BlackBerry software. I don’t believe RIM should price the PlayBook at $299.00 that just screams please buy me cause only reason you should is cause I am cheaper. The size and software is enough for now. The goal with this form factor is to attract customer and get positive review. I would have no problem paying 399.00 for 8G and an hundred dollar increase for each size up. Ipad is soo whack and I am soo happy QNX will allow RIM to deliver top notch product…….now if only they could rush this to their phones cause I am dying out here haha.

  18. Here’s another perspective on this. Call me crazy, but…

    What if RIM is not actually trying to go head-to-head against Apple — you know, the tablet pioneer with a two year head start and an installed base of millions of devices.

    What if they’re positioning themselves strategically for the long term — establishing themselves with a solid foundation so that when the other players wash out of this soon-to-be-supersaturated market, they’ll still be there. Reliable as ever.

  19. Did anyone notice that FaceTime is being pushed hard by Apple? “Thinner. Lighter. Faster. FaceTime. Smart Covers. 10-hour battery.”

    FaceTime is being viewed as a killer app by Apple and others, the next evolution of push-enabled chat (i.e., BBM). RIM really needs to evolve BBM or lose ground to the iPhone.

    I know many kids in schools use BlackBerrys mainly because of BBM. FaceTime will begin to eat away at those potential subscribers.

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