James Governor's Monkchips

Unboxing the unPlayBook

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At a recent event Adobe gave attending analysts Blackberry Playbooks.  Nice! I got mine today. For all the negative reviews, I am minded to like the device. After all – I don’t care AT ALL that it doesn’t come with an email client. That’s not what tablets are for, in my opinion… certainly not all they are for. To me angrybirds is more important than email on a tablet.

But the unboxing has been a nightmare, wiping out my entire afternoon. The physical packaging is beautiful, but the experience not so much. Initially I could get on to the wifi network, to create my PlayBook identity. So far so good. But then the immediate OS update failed to work, and the device stopped seeing the network. I tried using my phone as a hotspot with no password. Still no dice. So a brick, or maybe a skimming stone.

OK I thought- try downloading the Blackberry Desktop software to manage the OS update. But It hung. Just like the PlayBook itself, which sat there for 30 minutes saying “Connecting”. So I can’t do anything on the PlayBook – you can’t even access the homescreen with its preloaded apps without the OS upgrade. I can’t install desktop software to manage it.

And when I called tech support they said RIM strongly recommends you first start using the tablet at home. What the hell?

So now I am heading home. First experience of the PlayBook- nul points.

Packaging and user experience don’t just mean the physical box a device comes in- its about a seamless experience, or at least an experience with seams that actually works. A bit of friction is ok.

I can’t imagine how cross I’d be if I had bought the thing.

Adobe is a client. RIM is not.

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