Ina Fried

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Getting RIM’s PlayBook From Mike Lazaridis (Video)

One of the highlights of D: Dive Into Mobile was getting a few minutes to see RIM’s forthcoming PlayBook tablet in action. However, from there, things seemed to go downhill for CEO Mike Lazaridis.

According to the overwhelming consensus of both pundits and many of those in the room, Lazaridis’s talk left people even more skeptical that RIM truly is prepared to respond to the threat posed by Android and the iPhone.

Despite the rough going on stage, Lazaridis was kind enough to talk with Mobilized for a video interview, during which he both showed off the PlayBook and again made his case for why the BlackBerry is still competitive.

Asked about a rumor that the PlayBook might run Android applications, Lazaridis appeared to splash cold water, suggesting that the focus had been on making the device really support various Web standards, such as Java, Adobe AIR, Adobe Flash, HTML5 and Javascript.

“It’s foolish to fight the Web,” Lazaridis said, noting that Adobe has three million developers for its various products. “The Web has become the platform around the world….The whole point of PlayBook is to bring the power of tablets up to the Web platform.”

As for pricing, Lazaridis would only say that the PlayBook will be “competitive,” though at the very end of the video he seems to be making the case that it might be the same price or more expensive.

“I would argue this is a lot more powerful than the iPad,” he said.


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Microsoft argues that, with Surface Pro, you don’t need a MacBook Air. In tech marketing, this is known as the Surface-to-Air missile.

— Ross Rubin, via Twitter