I’ve been watching the coverage of the iPad launch and I haven’t seen anything more than a large iPod Touch. It’s sort of cool to be able to use iPod Touch apps on a larger screen, and it will surely make the movie watching experience better, but there was far too much hype over this device.
While Mike Lazaridis doesn’t seem too elated about the idea of a tablet, and would probably not let RIM go down that path, it still could happen. With enough pressure from marketing, and if Apple make a fortune on the tablet, the financial incentive could be enough. I think the BlackBerry OS would be more conducive to a tablet because it comes with push notifications and multitasking, but there are a few things that need to happen at RIM first, before a tablet could really be successful.
Eliminate the need to port - Apple has the right idea when it comes to alleviating the porting headaches from developers. This is something RIM really needs to work on and if they were to consider a tablet, they would have to come up with the ultimate porting solution as well. If all the developer has to do is build it once and have it running on both a BlackBerry smartphone and a BlackBerry tablet, they’ll do it.
Create a rich browsing experience – There was a moment when Steve Jobs was browsing the Internet on the iPad and he came across a page requiring a plugin. This was a huge mistake because it made it clear that the browsing experience wasn’t like it is on a desktop. RIM will need to take some technology hints from Skyfire and Opera, and make the browsing experience no different than that of a laptop/desktop.
Leave the cables at home – The iPad still requires you to use a USB cable to sync with your desktop. A good tablet experience shouldn’t require cables and syncing should be done OTA. Again, the iPad didn’t take any of the evolutionary steps I hoped it would.
What do you think? Would you buy a RIM Tablet?