Both OSs - QNX that powers the BlackBerry PlayBook and webOS 3.0 that powers the HP TouchPad - use card view for multitasking and similar swipe gestures. This led to the heated exchange - HP's accusation and RIM's answer. Here is HP's Jon Oakes' words on the subject:
"From what we’ve seen in the market, there are some uncanny similarities. It’s a fast innovation cycle and a fast imitation cycle in this market, so we just know that we have the creative engine here to continue to build on what we have, and we’ll keep innovating, we’ll keep honing and those guys hopefully will continue to see the value in it and keep following us by about a year."
Here's what RIM's Jeff McDowell, senior vice president for business and platform marketing, has to answer about this accusation:
"I feel that we set out from the ground up to define a user experience that we felt would delight our customers, and we landed in a place that may look like other competitive devices. But there was no intention and no preconceived notion that this is what we want to end up looking like. In fact, I think QNX had that design lined up before we even started working with them.
You know, cars over time end up looking a lot alike because you put them through a wind tunnel, and when you’re trying to come up with the best coefficient to drag ratio, there’s one optimized shape that gets the best wind resistance, right? Well, when you’re trying to optimize user experience that juggles multitasking, multiple apps open at once and on a small screen, you’re going to get people landing on similar kinds of designs."
Well, judge for yourselves, really. What we really care about is great operating systems, and we hope that both RIM and HP will deliver with QNX and webOS, respectively. Do you think the BlackBerry PlayBook and the HP TouchPad will succeed against the Android-powered tabs and the iPad?