Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 16th Aug 2012 18:12 UTC
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless For me, the two most interesting products in the operating system space to look forward to are Windows 8 (due to just how different it is), and BlackBerry OS 10. BlackBerry? Yes, and it's simple to see why. The BlackBerry Playbook, while not the most successful tablet, seems to be loved almost universally by its users, which bodes well for BB OS 10. On top of that, it's based on QNX, which is some major brownie points right there. The company has released information on which resolutions the operating system will support.
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Hmmm
by orfanum on Thu 16th Aug 2012 20:46 UTC
orfanum
Member since:
2006-06-02

I had the chance to have a play with one in an airport electronics store; a good opportunity because I was able to compare directly with an iPad 3 and several Galaxy Tabs. I so much wanted to love it, with the QNX pedigree, and my sometimes nostalgic desire for the return of my Blackberrry and all but it was, for me, rather more "meh" than "gimme".

Judged against the above major competition, I found the UI confusing (starting an action from beyond the screen? What's that about? Non-intuitive, much) and the device itself physically clunky and heavy. The Galaxy Tabs won hands down (just on the initial experience).

Sorry to rain on the RIM parade but as much as I have wanted to root for them in the past, and thus see more competition in this space, you really cannot keep resting on one's laurels as a business, and relying on the general sentiment out there that there should be alternatives to the other tablet players. That line of credit/credibility won't last very long.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Hmmm
by anda_skoa on Thu 16th Aug 2012 21:07 in reply to "Hmmm"
anda_skoa Member since:
2005-07-07

Judged against the above major competition, I found the UI confusing (starting an action from beyond the screen? What's that about? Non-intuitive, much)


Gestures from outside the view area are actually one of the best things about the user interface.

While one might not discover that when handling someone else's device, as a device owner this is the very first thing that is demonstrated to you (short but very nice tutorial).

Once you understand that the part around the screen is not just wasteland but actually an interactive part of the device, you almost immediately appreciate the consequences.

One such consequence is that gestures inside the applications content area will never trigger those system gestures, i.e. operating system and applications are not trying to make sense of the same input. It is either the app's job (movement originating within the screen boundaries) or the job of the control interface (movement starting outside the screen boundaries)

This also means that those system gestures can not be broken by a faulty app.
A swipe from the bottom bevel upwards will always minimize the currently running app, a swipe from the bottom left corner inwards will always bring up the virtual keyboard, a swipe from the top left corner inwards will always bring up the status bar (e.g. for quickly switching wireless off/on).

Reply Parent Score: 7

RE[2]: Hmmm
by orfanum on Thu 16th Aug 2012 21:26 in reply to "RE: Hmmm"
orfanum Member since:
2006-06-02

Thanks for the explanation; if I come across another PB I will give it a further and more extensive go. Now it's been unpacked, it makes sense that system and app gestures be kept separate.

Showing my ignorance again I suppose but has RIM trumpeted this enough as a distinctive and efficient UI difference? Why don't I kind of know this as part of the PB 'package' as a potential consumer? I am no hacker but I hardly have my head buried in the sand, either. Perhaps this is the bigger problem that RIM has?

Thanks again,

Orf

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Hmmm
by libray on Thu 16th Aug 2012 21:33 in reply to "RE: Hmmm"
libray Member since:
2005-08-27

Chiming in in agreement.

When using these gestures, you do not have to look at a particular part of the screen to click something. Your mind is at ease knowing that if you want to close an app, and my thumb is already near the bottom bezel, I can "just swipe" up to minimize and close. Or if I want to switch between applications, I can "just swipe" up and scroll apps, or do full scrolls.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: Hmmm
by gan17 on Thu 16th Aug 2012 22:22 in reply to "RE: Hmmm"
gan17 Member since:
2008-06-03

I wish I knew what you were talking about. ;)
Was thinking of getting a PB when it first hit stores here, but I just couldn't justify buying a tablet (any tablet) back then.

I've not even seen one in action since they're not really common over here (Singapore), but I was watching a demo reel over at Teknision's website while searching for the Chameleon Launcher (for Android tablets), and happenened to see a demo of the PB as well.

http://www.teknision.com/

Scroll down and click on "2012 Demo Reel" and fast forward to the ~26sec mark. Is that really what the PB looks like in use? If so, that's pretty nice, I have to say.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE: Hmmm
by daedalus on Fri 17th Aug 2012 07:37 in reply to "Hmmm"
daedalus Member since:
2011-01-14

That's a similar system to what Nokia have on the N9 with MeeGo Harmattan - if you swipe from the edge of the glass, it's an OS-specific gesture. If you only swipe on the screen itself, that's an application-specific gesture. A couple of people I've shown this to have said similar to you, but I have to say I love it after the first hour or so of use, and it's uniform across everything on the device so there's no inconsistency from certain apps or screens.

Reply Parent Score: 3