Apples are great but berries are better. At least for the corporate world.
A couple of weeks ago, my colleague Abbas posted his opinion on why he thinks the Blackberry PlayBook will fail. Now, I don’t normally question his sage-like wisdom, but I think that in this instance, he’s got it wrong.
Before I state my reasons, I will concede that this device has no place being a pure entertainment device and will probably never be as popular with general consumers as the iPad is. This device will by far and large appeal to the enterprise customer — corporate types who already own and use Blackberry phones and are looking for a portable device to extend their Blackberry experience.
As a Blackberry user, I can tell you now that I love the device. The data plans are lot more reasonable, the phone works beautifully, the email system is brilliant, it has a lovely free messenger application that all my friends use and I can listen to the occasional song when I want to. I couldn’t care less about having a FourSquare application or downloading a mini version of Monkey Island for my phone — when I want gaming mobility, I’ll just pick up my PSP and play God of War on it (beat that, iPhone/iPad!).
Here’s what I think will be the biggest selling points for the PlayBook:
1. Business Applications Support
I think it will be much easier to use Word documents and PowerPoint files on the Playbook. It will be easier to edit your spreadsheets on an airplane or hook up the PlayBook to a projector and run your presentation during a boardroom meeting. That’s something I’m sure every executive will find useful.
2. Flash Support
As business development manager for the Tbreak network, a big part of my job is meeting clients and introducing our websites to them. I can’t do that using an iPad because none of our flash-based adverts will show up on it. We publishers work hard to provide free content to users and rely on paid advertising to help keep us in business. Considering most adverts these days are flash based, I cannot support a device that does not enable flash. Yes, we could all switch to HTML5 but it will be a few decades before I am able to convince every advertising agency in the Middle East to switch to HTML5.
3. No 3G
Yes, you read right. I think that not having 3G support is a good thing. Considering I already own a Blackberry and pay for a data plan, why would I want to pay for another. I can simply hook up the PlayBook to my Blackberry and use my existing data connection.
Time will tell if the Blackberry PlayBook is successful or now. However, as a business user, I’m all for the Playbook to be a massive success.