Well we all knew it was coming sooner rather than later. Earlier this morning, Research In Motion’s CEO (or Co-CEO, however you’d like to have it) & Chairman, Jim Balsillie, sat down with the Bloomberg’s Emily Chang and went on a full on offensive regarding the BlackBerry PlayBook and all the negativity surrounding this new BlackBerry tablet computer . He goes on saying that you can pair it with your BlackBerry smartphone when clearly the question was how the PlayBook will enable the non-BlackBerry user to share the same experience as a BlackBerry user.
To his credit, he does mention new capabilities will be pushed out this Summer, as well as mentioning the 3G model, although he curiously fails to mention a 4G version.
Chang went on to ask Balsillie why he thinks the negativity surrounding the PlayBook is unwarranted. He goes on to note the portability, the over the air utolity of the PlayBook (I’m guessing he means Bridge) allows for a connection to your BlackBerry smartphone. He then goes on to note that “We’ve seeded some units a few weeks ago that people have tried, and they have certain elements that we’ve upgraded on it…” indicating that RIM has upgraded these review units since they had arrived in the hands of reviewers and addressed some major growing concerns (probably Flash, browsing fluidity, and such).
Chang then goes on to ask Balsillie about the appeal to a non-BlackBerry user, which I found to be a really fair question. While he fails to answer the question head on here, he goes on to mention that the PlayBook will, in fact, support an over-the-air (OTA) mail client and that users will be fine with the native webmail client applications and accessibility of the PlayBook right out of the box because, as some people fail to remember, this is a full HTML5, full Flash device.
I think he did a great job showing off company’s awareness of how fierce the competition surrounding the PlayBook really is. Balsillie even goes as far as to say he feels “really bullish” about the company’s future. I personally think this is a good showing, sans the counterpart Co-CEO Mike Lazaridis. What was funny about that is she even asks what Balsillie thought about Mike L.’s performance with the BBC.
All-in-all it was a great interview, but I think the one thing that was missing had to be some competitive banter. I really wanted to hear some Apple and Android bashing, but I digress. Aside from that he nailed everything I had expected to hear from a CEO regarding the defense of a new product. He even goes on a tangent to mention the new lineup of 6.1 BlackBerry devices saying “They’re beauuutiful! You’re gonna love ‘em”
If you have 8 free minutes and want to watch the interview check it out at Bloomberg.com
Source: Bloomberg West