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Playbook vs Xoom

This is a discussion on Playbook vs Xoom within the Motorola Xoom vs. Others forums, part of the Motorola Xoom Forum category; Last night I spent a few hours with the Playbook, basically putting it through itís paces to see what it can do and how it ...

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Thread: Playbook vs Xoom

  1. #1
    dvdcatalyst
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    Playbook vs Xoom

    Last night I spent a few hours with the Playbook, basically putting it through itís paces to see what it can do and how it does it.

    First the size (pic taken with Droid X):


    top to bottom: Xoom > NOOKcolor > Playbook

    The closest gadget I have to the Playbook is the NOOKcolor. Both are the same physical size, and have the same resolution. The NOOKcolor is running a locked-down version of Android to make it a reliable eReader, but it also means that it does not have much of an advantage over the Playbook. Ofcourse the NOOKcolor can be rooted/flashed/modded, but to make sure my software works properly for most people, I always keep my devices mostly unmodified.

    However, the Playbook is more targeted to the Xoom.
    I actually prefer the 7″ size for a tablet. The Xoom is great, but due to its size, its a bit hard to just grab and go. The Xoom replaced my own use for the NOOKcolor, but even after nearly 2 months, Iím still not used to its size. The Playbook seems like a step back, but it has its advantages.
    While I havenít had too much playtime with the Playbook yet, there are a few things that I really like:

    *the webbrowser rocks. It is fast and it acts as a full webbrowser. At nights, I usually check PayPal, and use some of the business features in there, and with the Xoom, getting into the sub-menu items was a pain. It was often easier for me to just get up and walk to my office and do it on my computer instead. With the Playbook, this worked like a charm, and seems to be even faster than that it does using Chrome on the Desktop.
    Media-loaded websites like CNN work like they should, and load quickly.


    CNN on Playbook

    *The interface. While the Blackberry Playbook doesnít have Widgets, the actual interface looks amazing, and feels very responsive. One of the cool things is that if you are watching a video, and want to check your email, the video continues to play when you are skimming through your running apps. When you open an app in full-screen, it will pause.



    (Battlestar Galactica continues to play in this view)

    *Something not mentioned in many reviews, but the best part about the Playbook is that it shows up on your computer network. Sort of like a NAS. You can just leave it connected to the charger in another room, and still drag files onto it. For video itís not the fastest transfer method, but it works great. I wish all tablets had something like this.
    But of course there are things I donít like about the Playbook.

    *The picture quality sucks. Iím not sure if it is me, or if my settings are not set right, but Iím not impressed:


    (3MB version on my website)

    *Lack of Widgets. Something iDevice users would not miss, but for Android users, Widgets is a big thing. These are little apps you place on your home-screen, and provide you with quick information such as emails and weather. I donít use many of them, but I do use them. The interface of the Playbook sort of runs apps as widgets when you are switching apps, but I like to have things like little notifiers running while I am doing something else.

    *When no apps are running, the Playbook displays the Appdrawer. Rather than just showing the desktop.



    You can reduce the height of the appdrawer to single-icon height, but Iíd still prefer to be able to just switch it to plain desktop-mode.



    *Lack of apps. Of course as a Xoom owner, the lack of apps on the market is something I am used to, however, as mentioned in many reviews, the Blackberry Playbook lacks the essentials. I donít have a Blackberry phone, so for me, the Playbook doesnít have the email app. It has a collection of shortcuts to popular web-based email sites, but I prefer to have something native to make it load a little quicker. The browser speed compensates this a bit, but still.

    Overall, I am quite happy with the Playbook, but just like most of the devices released recently, it feels unfinished. The Xoom with a lack of SD support (unless you root/mod), the Nintendo 3DS without a webbrowser or even video support etc.
    Last edited by dvdcatalyst; 04-20-2011 at 10:46 AM.

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  3. #2
    dvdcatalyst
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    Video playback is great on this thing. It played the 20Mbps clip I did yesterday without any issues, and my BSG episodes are Xoom HQ1 720p versions

  4. #3
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    Nice review bruh!
    dvdcatalyst likes this.

  5. #4
    dvdcatalyst
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steady Hawkin View Post
    Nice review bruh!
    thanks. It was a quickie, since I didn't spent that much time with it, but I'm planning to write some more over the next few days. And really, the Playbook isn't as bad as they make it out to be. Just like with many Xoom reviews, it seems that most of them are written by iFans. Of course its easy to compare with the iPad, but they should be more realistic, and compare it to the iPad's day 1, and seriously, out of the 70k iPad apps, how many of those apps are fart-apps

  6. #5
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    Thanks for the review, awesome!

  7. #6
    Agent Xoom
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    I just got home, and Staples was one of my stops. The Xoom display was front and center (no sign of iPad) and the Playbook was off to the left of the Xoom. I too was impressed with streaming videos .. very nice! I still prefer the Xoom size and versatility of the Xoom.

    ps .. Excellent review!
    dvdcatalyst likes this.

  8. #7
    Xoom Conveyor
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    I think the problem with RIM right now as far as the Apps thing is concerned, is that they don't have a very good Central App Store/Market. Back when I was on the Storm, it was a pain in the butt to find apps for the Blackberry Storm and even then, it was very convoluted as to how to put on some of the apps for the Blackberry that I kind of was fed up with it. Part of the reason I went with the Droid and stuck with it on a personal phone. While I had the Blackberry storm for the company side, I felt mostly frustrated with trying to find nice apps for it and used it mostly for the basic company stuff, and played more on the Droid.

    I am sort of disappointed with RIM on their tablet design idea. What was the corner stone of their devices was the Mail/Contact/Calendar, and the way a lot of things seem to play this tablet out, it makes it seem like an addon than an actual RIM Device. I would have considered the RIM Playbook similar to the iPad and Xoom as being a 'larger version' of the respective device, but RIM didn't seem to follow suit with it and that is VERY disappointing in my opinion.

  9. #8
    dvdcatalyst
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    The appstore on the Playbook is a bit of a pain. There is a "featured" area, but the browsing is sad. Every main category has sub categories, but rather than showing the top apps, it just shows the "folders" for the sub. It just requires more tapping, and currently, you end up in empty folders, making it even more of a pain. Searching seems to work, but you are right, its not as easy as it is on Android (or iTunes). Unfortunately, for some reason, 2011 is the year of unfinished device releases.

  10. #9
    Xoom Conveyor
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    Well, I remember back when they didn't have one. And the only way to find apps was to google search for it. And even then, when you did find places with Blackberry apps, they were hard to install or only worked for certain blackberry models, but not for others, so it was major hit and miss. The storm had something on it, but it had literally 'nothing' worthwhile and didn't seem to have 'breadth'. Which I think I can chalk up to the fact that RIM didn't really bother getting into the nitty gritty to app development as their strength was just having a business device. It wasn't until the iPhone Smartphone challenge, did it become more of a necessity, and unfortunately, I think RIM just didn't really catch onto it.

  11. #10
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    There was a demo at BB when I was there last Friday I was messed up or something because I tried every known option to get to a home screen and I could not find one. My experience was very poor to say the least.

    Sent from my DROIDX using Tapatalk


 
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