RIM CEO Says Non-existent Tablet Is Way Ahead of the iPad

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Oh boy. There’s trash talking, and then there’s ‘somebody slow down on the meds for that guy’ trash talking. The co-CEO of RIM (makers of Blackberry devices) is falling well into the latter category in his latest pronouncements on his company’s still-unreleased tablet called the Playbook.

Invigorated by RIM’s better-than-expected results, Balsillie touted RIM and the PlayBook as superior to Apple in a several minute rant during the company’s earnings call, Silicon Alley Insider reports. Balsillie’s comments were in response to a question from JP Morgan analyst Rod Hall, who asked what RIM’s plans were to get ahead of Apple and Google in the market.

"I think the PlayBook redefines what a tablet should do," said Balsillie, who believes the market will shift away from "a proprietary SDK and unnecessary apps," presumably a reference to Apple’s iOS and App Store, to "web fidelity and tool familiarity."

I’m not at all sure what ‘web fidelity and tool familiarity’ means – but if it has anything to do with having a great web experience on a mobile device then Blackberry has just about zero reputation for delivering that, whereas iOS devices lead the field in this area. As or ‘unnecessary apps’ the billions of iOS downloads make that phrase laughable.

Here are my favorite two pass me some of what he’s smoking comments though:

"I think there’s going to be a rapid desire for high performance. And I think we’re way ahead on that," Balsillie continued during Thursday’s earnings call. "And I think CIO friendliness, we’re way ahead on that."

"I think the PlayBook clearly sets the bar WAY higher on performance, and you’re going to see more," said Balsillie.

So let’s think on those for just a sec. They’re way head on high performance. With their tablet that is not available for sale yet. The one nobody can buy or use or get any sort of performance from until sometime next year. That’s way ahead of the iPad, which has sold millions, continues to sell millions more each quarter, and is thrilling its users with performance of the real-live kind, as opposed to the big promises kind. And I wouldn’t be so sure on that CIO friendliness bit either, given the major inroads the iPad is already making in the enterprise.

You’ve got to do some serious spinning to figure the non-existent device, the invisible one, is the one ‘setting the bar’ for performance. Here’s my quick scoreboard roundup for Mr. Balsillie:

Number of tablet devices that perform at all right now: Apple 1, RIM 0

Good luck with selling a standard-setting tablet with no great apps, or far fewer than the iPad offers. Oh, and lots of luck on feeling you’re setting the bar when the second generation of the iPad hits the market right on the heels of (or perhaps even ahead of) your Gen 1 device.

It will be big fun looking back at how this year’s trash talking from RIM pans out next year.

News Via: Apple Insider

Patrick Jordan

Founder and Editor in Chief of iPad Insight. Husband, father to a lovely daughter, Commander of the Armies of the North, dog lover (especially Labs), Austinite, former Londoner, IT consultant, huge sports nut, iPad and mobile tech blogger, mobile apps junkie.

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5 thoughts on “RIM CEO Says Non-existent Tablet Is Way Ahead of the iPad”

  1. Too bad all those comparisons are not only with a released vs unreleased device, as you stated, but also a future Gen 1 vs what will be a past Gen 1 device by the time the Playbook gets here. iPad 2 will either be released, or at least announced, by the time we actually see the Playbook in the wild around March. I wonder how the mythical beast will stack up against Apple's second go at the tablet? Considering how polished the iPad was for a first generation device, Apple can focus more on adding polish and additional features rather than spending all their time fixing tons of bugs (Palm Pre Plus, anyone?).

    Then there is the other big problem with the Playbook- Adobe Air. You basically admit that your phone OS, which you just put a fresh coat of paint on, is an outdated piece of garbage, and the best you can do to replace it is shoehorning a desktop design suite for making upsized flash apps into your tablet? This is the savior of Blackberry? This, instead of real apps based on their coming QNX OS, is what is headed to their phones? Wow. I hope they ship the Playbook with a briefcase-sized external battery pack. They'll have to if people want to be able to use apps for more than an hour at a time. This is ADOBE we're talking about. Not exactly know for battery-friendly technology.

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