RIM puts PlayBook vs. iPad in browser test video

Today RIM posted a video of their PlayBook vs. Apple's iPad to demonstrate the browsing ability and speeds the PlayBook has to offer. The results are interesting but seemingly skewed as well.

There were three different tests RIM used to compare the browers on the two devices. They went head-to-head in raw web-site rendering, Acid3, and Java.

To start out they are both directed towards IFA.com and then CBS.com. The PlayBook clearly finishing loading and rendering both web-sites faster than the iPad. The CBS site however has flash content on it and obviously will not fully load on the iPad.

On the Acid3 test both devices managed to score 100/100 but RIM boasts that the iPad has an HTML error during this test.

The funny thing about these tests are that the iPad is over 6 months old compared to the PlayBook not even being out yet for sale. Also an interesting note is the fact the PlayBook is running on QNX which is Adobe Flash and AIR programs so naturally it will run flash sites as compared to the iPad not having flash capabilities.

It will be far more interesting to see the 2nd generation iPad pitted versus the PlayBook as the two devices will be on a much more level playing field. Do you think this test has any validity given the fact the iPad is real and the PlayBook is still technically vaporware or do you think this is Apple's chance to step up their game and blow the PlayBook out of the water?

Check out the video after the break!

[ CrackBerry ]

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Reader comments

RIM puts PlayBook vs. iPad in browser test video


I think they're pulling a palm. comparing a product to the last generation model makes one look silly.
if they wanted to be fair they should have used a site with flash and html5 options for the comparison, but I bet it made them look bad when they did

It's all marketing. The details of the test and the results don't matter. It's all about what you can put in the consumer's mind. I think the real issue is that Apple sells "ideas" and all the other competitors are selling products. And the way I see it, that's why the other competitors are playing catch-up.

Technically they aren't comparing to "the last generation model" since there is only one generation available to compare to.

The flash comparison is perfectly fair. Although we all know that it won't work. I'd love to be able to goto the cbs site on my iPad but can't but I can on an android or blackberry device. Kinda a plus for me.

Last generation? Its the current generation. Why is it that when Apple gets beat in something, the results are "skewed"? If the PlayBook is vaporware, then the next iPad is not even MistWare yet! I own an iPad and like it...but come on. The PlayBook looks very interesting to me. Apple had better step it up!

That's funny that Kevin over at CB called out your opinion.
I think there both good devices but is fair to compare to what is out there and is a mistake to dismiss it on your part.

Cool! I'd like to pick up one of those Playbooks to do my own comparissons. Where can I get one? ............... Anyone? ............ Still wondering .......................

I'm sold! I'm going to go buy a Playbook right now! what?...they're not available yet? Fail

This ad is a desperate attempt to lure developers.
RIM realizes that they are lucky if they can capture and maintain the 3rd Place of app stores. Considering that the apps will likely not play on any of their phones, I doubt it will ever happen. Who wants a product where you are waiting months to possibly forever for the same app being enjoyed on other tablets today?

Playbook looks good but the better comparison would be when the Playbook is released. By that time iPad Gen 2 should be out and that's when it matters. Right now, just looks like a good demo.

To use a sport comparison, you can only beat what's infront of you.
And those tests show Playbook beat iPad.
Who knows what will happen when iPad 2 arrives, but then technically you could then say Playbook is previous gen and that those results are skewed too.
Why cant people just admit that iPad doesnt do some things as good as the Playbook? Its not like its shameful or anything.

i agree with mark..
im apple fanboy all the way, but come on, you cant be stupid and really try to convince yourself this test obviously shows that the playbook has a better browser experience.

We can do the same with iPhone 4 and the original iPhone. See how the pages render faster on the iPhone 4, see how the retina display looks better than the original iPhone. Comparing up and coming with the old, not a true test. Good try though RIM.

The only thing that showed me is that the Playbook is too small. Oh, and the Playbook isnt a real product yet...

1st, 2nd, 3rd gen iPad... It isn't going to matter. As long as Apple continues to scorn Flash and Flash continues to be used by the majority of well known sites the iPad web browser experience will continue to be hobbled and OSes like Android and QNX will continue to improve their web experiences.

So the PlayBook is vaporware, but the iPad 2 isn't? Who's to say they even change anything in the iPad 2 othe than the front facing camera?

Fair? All is fair in love and marketing. Of course, as impressive as the PlayBook's speed is, any comparision is ultimately irrelevant unless/until RIM ships a product at a comparable price, and even then you have to compare the whole product, including size/weight/battery life/apps. At this point, though:

  • Good for RIM for striking out in a new (for them) direction.
  • Better for us if they bring it to market at a decent price.
  • Best for us if RIM hits a home run, goosing Apple with extra motivation.

Competition is a good thing.

I have an iPad myself and I enjoy it, but I am more excited about the Playbook than I am about an iPad with Facetime. I have an iPhone 4 and have not used Facetime in about 3 months. Waiting on my Samsung Galaxy Tab to come in the mail any day to see how it performs.

Also doesnt the Playbook native browser use BIS or BES servers that cache's webpages. I know this is true on blackberry mobile devices (I use to be a blackberry user)
I still think its comparing apple to oranges

Yeah, it's ok to compare it to the first gen iPad but by the time it comes out (if ever) iPad 2 will be out...

it still makes me laugh that anyone from the apple communtiy can use the term vaoprware considering the recent white iphone situation, but nonetheless they compared the playbook with apples current product, its not last gen as its not been superseeded, and the results arent skewed as in realtime pages loaded faster on the playbook.
does this mean the ipad is rubbish? totally not. does it mean its going to have stiff competiton in the new year? i think so

again I will point out. if the playbook is like other blackberry mobile devices, it pulls from the BIS and BES servers.
when I had a blackberry and BIS was down or BES, I couldnt get webpages even over wifi, i had to open a third party browser to get webpages.

Nice use of the pinch zoom on the Playbook.
Oh, right that was the iPad.
Who can say if both units were on the same WiFi connection, they didn't do any closeup shots of the network settings/connections. For all we know the iPad was on 3G or a crummy WiFi with low bandwidth. This was not an independent video--it was RIM propaganda by RIM employees.

LOL. This is absolutely hilarious!!! You fanboys just don't get it! I sat in a store yesterday and pondered an iPad for Christmas, but I'm waiting for the PlayBook. The fact that the iPad 2 or whatever it will be called will not support Flash will always be an issue. While some will go ahead and purchase an iPad, many will not and just wait it out. I show someone the "vaporware" just a few days ago. Someone who just purchased an iPad and he kicked himself for it. If he had known about the playBook he would have waited. All this advertising does is cause "some" people to second guess and IMO that's what RIM is trying to accomplish.

I was waiting for you folks to try and explain why this wasn't valid. Thanks for that good laugh.
Just accept that this looks good and beats the iPad in those tests. It doesn't matter how it will compare to iPad 2.0 at the moment since it is not available to test against. They simply tested against the de facto standard in the industry. And they win for the moment. Every new tablet that comes along will tout their greatness if they can beat the iPad.
I'm sure Apple isn't resting on its laurels and will put out one heck of version 2 but until I see it in action, win for RIM (for now).

Let's do a test to see which product exist currently in the market. iPad? Here! Playbook? Playbook? PlaaaayBooook? Absent. Demo over.

Sorry. But it IS first gen vs first gen. As usual, the Apple product has to have excuses made for it. When you compare the iPhone to the "latest" whatever to come out, you don't go use a 3G for it, or a first gen iPhone. Nooooooo. Let's compare the iPhone 4 to someone elses first release. I wouldn't mind this so much if it was balanced. The iPad lacks a lot. Just admit it. But Apple is always given a pass on their first relaese product, cuz you know, they will fix that later, while the others are expected to hit it out of the park first time.

It absolutely is a legit test. The iPad hardware is 6 months old but not the software. They didn't compare hardware specs.
The Flash rendering is a legit bullet for them. All sites w/ Flash are off limits unless they provide an alternative, which not all do. It is a legit point.
A 2nd gen iPad still will not use Flash but might fair better on rendering speed. I would expect it to but even a Nexus One on Froyo renders faster than an iPad so this wasn't a major shocker.

I thought getting a playbook was a bad thing. If the coach told you he had to talk to you and bring your playbook, you were getting cut from the team.

I'm an unashamed apple fanboy but come on Rene...what should RIM compare the playbook to? An iPad 2 that hasn't been released or even officially acknowledged? As it stands, the web rendering on the Playbook seems to be faster and smoother than Apple. There are still a million other things that make the iPad "magical" like its battery life and incredible plethora of apps, but on web rendering, its losing to a RIM product.
This is a GREAT thing for Apple lovers because as I type this Steve Jobs is whipping Apple employees to beat RIM and the end result will be a better, faster, smoother iPad 2.
Let's all put the kool-aid down and be happy that there is competition because competition means lower prices and better products for everyone. Capitalism at its best.

Well they could have compared the play book with the samsung galx pad, I think that would been a better showdown unless they all ready did and it did not come out in there favor.

I say it's fair to visit this again when Playbook comes to consumers. If the iPad 2 is available for consumers at that time, the tests better be between the Playbook and the iPad 2 and not the original iPad.

Apple will do what Apple does best.. Blow competitors out of the water.. like they did with palm pre and any other device that has gone head to head..

Really TiPb??? Are you just a bit biased here? RIM is doing the smart thing here by exposing the iPad's biggest weakness... browsing. You might think that RIM's use of two specific websites isn't a great representation so would you like me to come up with another million or so that won't load properly on the iPad? I love my iPhone 4 and have a macbook so I'm in no way anti-apple but there's no way that I'm going to buy an iPad. I guess all the iPad owners really don't want to browse because it's really over rated. Also looks like the Skyfire browser on the iPhone was really a flop. ;p LOL

So what, exactly, is RIM trying to say - that the whole experience on the tablet is related to the browser? Sorry, but that's another battle for a different platform. Tablets are more than simply interacting with a web browser. The primary use for a tablet is reading and light information processing. So, I guess that RIM is saying from the beginning that they have no content to deliver other than what's on the web and cannot compete with the iPad and iBooks. We've seen how that story goes when a hardware company comes out with hardware but no platform - Apple ended up dominating the space. Here's to hoping that someone else figures that out.

No it don't think it does really I mean going to flash websites on a flash non-compatible device isn't yin much apart this site doesn't work on a real device that doesn't work with flash and vapourware that is meant to that isn't even available to consumers

While it is technically fair for RIM to compare the two "current" models (I think the irony of a, we'll say, dated model vs. a non-existent model is quite hilarious) of their respective tablet devices, I feel that RIM should have done a FAR more extensive comparison. I'm somewhat of an Apple fanboy, however, I am reserving my judgement until a full comparison is done (ie: Apps, media player, user friendliness, battery life, etc). It is definitely possible for RIM to outshine the iPad, however, Apple WILL release an updated version (most likely one that blows iPad gen1 out of the water, as did iPhones), and a comparison will have to be redone. And judging by the newest iDevices (to include the MacBook Air [don't shoot me; it is quite comparable to other iOS devices]), I don't think RIM has a chance in hell, once Apple releases iPad gen2. But hey... that's just me.

...and from an aesthetic standpoint, the PlayBook is WAY too small for comfort while in use. It may be a Kindle competitor for reading, but way to small, in my opinion, for a tablet device.

The browser looks superior to the iPad, big time. However it's one app... not even the app I use the most.
The iPad is gaining a huge foothold in the App category, it will be up to developers to make other platforms successful or else they will be just a web browsing, email and media tablet.

LET's see the how many of this whatever BOOK, will sell if come out one of these days.
remember any time you buy a RIM product is already obsolete as soon you get it out of the box.

@Arin I agree with you,the play book looks way to small for me. I like the iPad screen real-estate, I wonder if the none tech person will go with the smaller screen vs the bigger one?

Few sketchy things about this video...
1)TinyURL was used... during the canvas test they were showing different URLs in the address line...
2)If they were both connected to the same wi-fi, then obviously one will load after the other if loading the same site. The playbook probably had the first ip. ISPs cant send one router 2 copies of one page at the same time.
Im stoked to see the playbook, but I think this video is kind of a cheap shot towards the ipad.

The demo leaves out the most important point - Try typing out anything of a decent length on that small on-screen keyboard compared to the iPad. That is what people don't understand - iPad in landscape mode is actually extremely well suited to regular typing.

Ok, so what are all these great flash sites that everyone must be able to access? Hulu is blocking everything but desktops and laptops so that is out (unless you do the paid app but that works on the ipad). Flash games are a joke. Anything else?
I also find it funny how the marketing picture at the beginning of the article makes the playbook look the same size as the ipad but when you see the video it is clearly much much smaller.

Some complaining Apple is selling an Idea instead of a Product. But that's the power of Apple, it's not bad, what's a product worth without an idea?

It is funny how Apple has so many people brainwashed that they can’t acknowledge that a head to head comparison of current devices, even if one has not been released yet, the iPad loses. So instead of people saying hmmm the Playbook may be a pretty good web browsing device they resort to other stuff that doesn’t matter in this test i.e. gaming, size, etc. This is a WEB FIDELITY test and Blackberry is showing just that. And the whole Flash thing, Apple has truly dropped the ball because everyone is use to the Flash experience on their desktops and laptops and it is needed on your tablet device. So until everyone converts to HTML5, Apple needs to play ball with Flash and the consumers need to stop giving excuses for Apple.

I love it apple comes out with one product and the competition comes out with twenty just to compete with one. The iphone caused the entire industry to change and the iPad created its own genre.
All apple is going to do now is send out an update to battle this minor problem and RIM will probably have to make a whole new tab device I love it LOL

@mobile virgin, created its own genre? really? its the first ever tablet then right? ah maybe not.
and apple cant send out an update to fix flash. say who needs flash all you want, what happened when they released a browser capable of rendering flash for the iphone? that many people wanted it that it crashed their systems! so people, even iphone users, DO want flash

This wasn't meant as anti-RIM at all. Just a different perspective than that coming from RIM is all.
Competition is great and I think the PlayBook looks pretty good right now. Hopefully Apple sees this as an opportunity to improve their future products.

It really is laughable that some of you really labor under the delusion that calling the Playbook vaporware and lamenting the size of the Playbook and whatnot takes away from the fact that THE PLAYBOOK CLEARLY HAS A BETTER BROWSING EXPERIENCE. Instead of being realistic and admitting that, you try to lambaste the Playbook on aspects that are immaterial to this video.
And to Brian Tufo, this article really makes you seem a bit, well, amateurish. You act like it isn't fair that this comparison is being made, because the Playbook is vaporware. Yet, like a suppliant little fanboy, you try and veil the iPad's loss to the Playbook by talking about what it will be like to see the 2nd gen iPad vs. the Playbook?! If the Playbook is vaporware, then the 2nd gen iPad is non-existentware. Honestly, a few writing classes may do you well, I understand that you are allowed to have bias, but this sounds so unprofessional that it is silly.

The iPad is so yesterday......so why did it take everyone else so long to bring out a competitive model? Sure the blackberry loaded a website faster, i think they have had an extra what.... 10 months to better the iPad in every way...nice work! With iPad v2.0 coming who will be buying one of these 7" Playbooks in 3 months time?

@Jake thanks for your conments. Keep in mind that when the PlayBook comes out the 2nd gen iPad will be right behind it with bolstered performance. Also you are right I do enjoy Apple products but no longer own an iPad. So I disagree about the fact I am biased. I've commented above about how I think this competition is great and will only lead to better products for the consumers. Also I was merely pointing out that the PlayBook has NOT been released and is comparing itself to a product that has been on the market and extremely successful for many months now.

I think it's great we have a choice of two awesome devices if the iPad did not come out the would be no play book and no reason for apple to try and one up rim true innovation comes from competition i can't wait to see what comes next.

It's funny who companies try and try and try and try............... Yet 22 phones later, Only one phone still matters! It's going to be even funnier when they try and catch the Ipad.

@Jake - Load a website on your Playbook and I'll load the same site on my iPad, let's see which one loads faster, you pick the site. Oh wait, that's right, there is no such thing as a Playbook right now. I'll get back with you in 6 months and maybe we can try again. In the meantime I'll be using my iPad while you hang out in your moms basement.

I think we got to remember than RIM made this video.. and therefore they are obviously choosing comparison factors which they know they can beat the '1st' generation ipad at.
There is much more to a tablet than mere web browsing, namely battery life, newly inspired app-compatibility, interface and so on. I would say the the playbook would obviously have a far shorter battery life due to it's faster processor, smaller size and flash support. Well I cannot say for sure as the playbook is not out. But I would like to point out that playbook have yet to mention it's expected battery life in any way to date.
On another note, the ipad has been out for a year now, and it's tech is obviously gonna be obsolete in comparison to a product being released a year later. A fairer comparison would be with the next generation of ipad.

What this video shows is what anyone with any common sense knows. The iPad was something that Apple used to fool people into spending money on a useless product that can't even browse the entire world wide web. How said is that? And peope continue to defend Apple... are you kidding me? The iPad is a disaster. I will be buying a PlayBook when released and I don't really care if an iPad 2 is coming out any time soon because I'm finished buying Apple garbage.

It's nice to read a quality blog post. I really enjoy many of the blog posts on your site.