T-Mobile G-Slate vs BlackBerry PlayBook vs Apple iPad 2 vs Motorola XOOM

For the better portion of the last month, we’ve been toiling away getting comfy with some of the newest tablets to hit the market of late, and now that we’ve gotten a feel for all of them, it’s best to sit down to compare and contrast them all in one major showdown. With the Apple iPad 2, BlackBerry PlayBook, Motorola XOOM, and T-Mobile G-Slate all on deck waiting for their turn in the spotlight, we have to focus our attention on all of them simultaneously to better gauge how they differentiate with one another – and at the same time, what categories they excel at. Naturally, it’s rather hard to concretely say which one is the best out of the bunch, especially when user preferences come into play, but nonetheless, we need to look back and meticulously figure out which one is probably agreed as being the most balanced. So without any further delay, let’s get right into the thick of the battle!


Visually, all four tablets basically rely on the same foundations when it comes down to their designs, and none of them necessarily deviate from the usual slate form factor. However, we’re still at a gaze and really have to marvel at the design and construction of the iPad 2 since it embodies a combination of quality materials and attention to fine detail. Compared to the other crop, its remarkable razor thin profile impressively sets it apart, but it’s only marginally thinner than the BlackBerry PlayBook. With RIM’s model, we have to applaud it as well since it’s very sturdy for a 7-incher – while retaining a pocketable design. As for the two Android tablets, we favor the G-Slate’s design over the XOOM slightly because it’s more comfortable to hold and looks cleaner thanks to its soft touch rear cover.  Still, the iPad 2 clearly has the striking figure from the onset that will easily attract any prying eyes from far away.

Evidently, the screen size of a certain tablet will more than likely dictate whether or not it’s favorable to an individual, but in all honestly, the PlayBook’s quality display shines above the pack. Sure it’s the tiniest out of the bunch at 7-inches, but combining its iridescent color production, stunning clarity, and high pixel density, it soundly comes together to offer an unbelievable experience. Adding to its sheer prowess, the PlayBook edges out the iPad 2 in delivering the highest brightness output, which contributes in making it visible under the gleaming eye of the sun. Apple’s pride and joy follows closely with its 9.7” display, but you can distinctively notice its jagged looking on-screen text. Moreover, the G-Slate still boasts a nice looking display at 8.9-inches, but there is a slight yellowish tinge with its output. And lastly, the XOOM’s 10.1” display provides the most real estate, but it’s recognizable that it’s employing the lowest quality display because of its weak luminance.

Not something you’d necessarily think about, especially taking into account the larger size of tablets, we’re still presented with the ability to shoot photos and videos on the go with all four. In terms of sensors, both the iPad 2 and PlayBook employ fixed focused cameras that lack any flash, but the PlayBook manhandles the iPad 2 since it packs a 5-megapixel one as opposed to the less than 1-megapixel count of the iPad 2. Conversely, both the G-Slate and XOOM carry along 5-megaixel auto-focus cameras with flash, which is handy for macro shots, but the G-Slate has the novel feature of shooting videos in 3D with its dual cameras.

Turning on a tablet shouldn’t be a frustrating experience in any sense, but unfortunately, the PlayBook’s annoyingly small dedicated power button is a nightmare to press. Thankfully it’s not much of a problem with the other three tablets, however, you can bypass on having to press the PlayBook’s power button because you can still execute a swipe gesture from the bottom bezel all the way to the top one to power it on – sadly, there’s no gesture to do the opposite.



37. Applethebest unregistered

Hey you all dont forget that any apple product in the world can't get a VIRUS. a virus can enter any other product of any other company but apple leaves them behind.

35. DaveMTL unregistered

I bet both Moto and RIM had guys like the ones responding here decide on their essential specs. All which are pretty much useless to actual users. Fancy camera? No... who wants to place this big slab in front of their face and say "cheese!". Fast CPUs? Only useful in making things seem to flow naturally, which iOS does well... and BTW, the A5 beats both the XOOM and Playbook handily (see any credible tests). Apps are by far the most important, unless you're a geek who spends his days repeating specs to himself. People want to do things on their tablet. Why did the iPad2 smash to pieces the XOOM which was introduced earlier? Because Apple actually delivered a WORKING MACHINE! The specs on the box were in the consumers hands day one... no missing apps like email or SD slots which did not work or promises of eventual upgrades. You usually pay cheaper to get less, not more. The iPad and iPad2 simply work and work well. Period. And the A5 squashes the Playbook and XOOM processors! (Yeah! I'm repeating myself there) Just for geek info, look into the history of Apple and ARM. You'll see a relationship that goes back nearly 20 years. Not 12 months like the playbook or 18ish months like motorola. Add to that the fact that Apple has chip engineers with experience with ARM, PowerPC and Motorola chips. Apple is plenty techie, they simply prefer to brag about delivering products people like, more than their tech credentials.

34. taco50

Posts: 5506; Member since: Oct 08, 2009

Ipad wins hands down in applications which is huge for the functionality. Also wins in smoothest and easiest ui and battery life. Playbook was rushed to market. Android is ok if you like the os. I don't because I don't like buggy and glitchy.

32. benjamin4567 unregistered

Unfortunately, I'd have to say based on this review Apple Ipad 2 has the competition beat. Though blackberry boasts impressive hardware the lack of apps software wise just dumps them into the toilet plus lack of email service on the blackberry really? And the android ones are nice and they do have excellent multi tasking but cmon don't you think they should have fixed the lagging somehow? As far as hardware minus the camera the Ipad 2 is better than the android tablets. Even though i am very partial to android and love their products i think at least right now apple has them beat. I am looking forward to the new Samsung tab Which will have all the things we're expecting from a android tab and more.

28. me unregistered

big suprise Iphonearena.com picks Ipad 2 as best tablet. This is why I come on here maybe once a month.

20. IOS5 unregistered

I try out all of those tabs still ipad2 the best for lot of reason: - faster than all those tabs - better battery life - more apps 65000 and better garpics and lots of HD games that xoom and can't offorded play book it's a nice tab but no apps, no mail client, no Facebook client the best thing on play book the browser with full flash and you tube client and by the way honey comp multitasking it's a copy of iPad multitasking no different freez the app! The real multitasking is only play book admit that.

24. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

try using a period once n a while.. then you wont sound like your a babbling idiot. -faster how? they are all relatively similar dual core set ups. -better battery life because it does less. -The android app store is set to overtake apple by July so thats not a good arguement. -the ipad doesnt have true multitask. Its the only one of the 3 that cant. -both Android and QNX have true multitasking. Android and QNX dont just "freeze" the app. It can continue doing its thing in the background. And it can do that with multiple apps at a time, not just certain special apps.

27. phonefan4

Posts: 13; Member since: May 03, 2011

Have you ever actually used all those tabs? I tried them and yes the ipad 2 is more smooth and fluid than all of them. It also has proven the battery life on more than one review. The apps are where it really shows its best. Android may have a lot of apps now but the quality of those apps suck! I have had android, palm, blackberry and now ios, and ios has way better games (real games like madden, dead space, resident evil 4, infinity blade, etc) and quality of apps.

19. ClarkJamesVZW unregistered

So phonearena once again gives a comparison without a clear winner? Don't you have reviews on all of these devices? If the point of a comparison is to decide which device is superior then I would say that PA has once again failed to do so. I am not an apply fan, however I think it is safe to say that value wise the iPad2 is the best device out there currently. I have used a XOOM (we have one at work) and I love it. If price is no factor I think it is the best device, but price considered the iPad currently takes the cake. I only wish PA could have made a decision so I could contrast my views to theirs....

18. Apple hater unregistered

And again apple wins in this phonearena review.Why am not surprised :(

25. danny024

Posts: 10; Member since: Feb 27, 2011

HAHAAHH So true. I'm starting to doubt Phonearena now

15. Vinnie unregistered

Seems like any Apple device will be considered better over here. Lame.

13. Ali unregistered

The best comparison video ive seen yet

8. roconnell35

Posts: 4; Member since: Dec 07, 2010

Yeah same I was hoping to see the transformer up there too... phonearena hasn't even reviewed it yet, i wonder why...

7. Auggie unregistered

why didn't PA include the Asus eee Pad it can contend with these guys if not even more

11. Lucas777

Posts: 2137; Member since: Jan 06, 2011

i know!!!!!!!!!! eee pad (although stupid name) is the best honeycomb tablet becuase it offers everything th eothers do and it is cheap! they did it the right way and what do ya know, they r sold out

6. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

the LG shoots 1080p video just fine. 1080p in single camera mode, 720p in 3d mode. the fact that it has the capability to do a 3d mode puts it ahead regardless. I put "performance" under smoothest movements, which i gave to QNX. Since they all pretty much run the same processor otherwise, i didnt see a need for a specific performance category since they should all be nearly identical. Also since there isnt any high end QNX games to do framerate comparisons between, u cant really judge the QNX's high end performance (a difference in drivers between platforms can make a real difference).. just how smooth the UI is. So, my count still stands.. and either way the clear looser is iOS which was the point that Phone Arena is afraid to make.

12. Lucas777

Posts: 2137; Member since: Jan 06, 2011

uhh ur processors statement is invalid... its like saying a sandy brdige 2.4 is the same as a core2duo 2.4....... not even close... and really, they said it lags... and a lot of that comes from software... simple fact is apple has had a year to fine tune it and the others havent

17. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

The processors statement is very valid. They are all running off a tegra2, exept for the ipad which is running off a downgraded samsung eXynos processor. They are all pretty much the same. The only difference between them is going to be how their software is optimized for the chipsets. Apple hasnt had "a year" to fine tune anything. The iOS is by far the most simplistic and lowest resource using os of the group. It ran smooth on a single core.. did you expect different on a dual core? Then again, if apple ever implements things like ya know.. multiple screens, widgets, REAL multitasking, flash, live backgrounds, real notifications, and whatever else... the system would take up a heck of a lot more resources and slow down a bit like the other 2 OSs that actually do all that.

22. Lucas777

Posts: 2137; Member since: Jan 06, 2011

okay... so a lagggy os is worth a few widgets? and not all processors are the same. and also i dont think the a5 is a exynos..

23. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

the A5 is a samsung made dual core. It is a low end exynos. The same way that the original iPad and iPhone4's "A4" chip was a low end Humminbird processor.. the same that is found in the Galaxy S. Samsung makes the bulk of Apple's internal hardware. And yea, all the smoothness in the world isnt worth giving up all that functionality. If im going to pay 600 bux for something i dont really need in the first place, i want functionality, not window dressing. Besides, its not like its THAT choppy. It just seems that way when compared to the simplistic iOS. I've been playing with the Gslate at work for weeks now. Unless the thing is loaded down with pages of widgets and programs running in the background, its relatively smooth.

5. remyrz

Posts: 205; Member since: Oct 28, 2010

the video goes to the playbook, and performance as well cauze of the not multitasking ipad and the portrait bit lack of hC.. so it's: iOS: 2 QNX: 5 HC: 4

3. remixfa

Posts: 14605; Member since: Dec 19, 2008

Google needs to step it up? Hey, how does apple handle flash content? Oh yea.. thats right.. it cant. :) Step it up apple! Quit being a whiney snob and make a deal with Adobe. Well, going category to category the clear winner is Honeycomb followed by QNX with iOS in last place. best screen? QNX best notifications? HC best multitask HC best browser QNX best camera HC Best video HC best keyboard HC best battery iOS smoothest movement QNX (sorry, but apples non multitasking OS is disqualfied for being too simplistic and doesnt operate in the same category as the other 2) most form factor/price point choices HC most optimized apps iOS Sooo... iOS = 2 QNX = 3 HC = 6 Phone arena cant say it for some reason, but i can. By their own article, Honeycomb is the clear OS winner.

4. urbanglowcam unregistered

uhhh no. best camera and multitasking definitely goes to the playbook. i dont see honeycomb doing 1080p video and multitasking as smoothly.

10. Lucas777

Posts: 2137; Member since: Jan 06, 2011

ya ur retarted... if u want to go into everything then the ipad obviously wins... THEY SAID HONEYCOMB LAGS... ur trying to get us to think a laggy product is amazing just cause it has a better camera on a tablet? nice.. oh and i see you forgot to add the price in there hahahahahaha. what a joke. u have no credibility to ur statement. so ur telling me with only one model on each hc tablet, it has more choices? the ipad has three!!!! hahahahaha and its so much cheaper... hahahahaha u just hate on apple but the ipad 2 vs honeycomb is the wort place to show it cause wait what was that? the xoom only sold 250,000? didnt the ipad 1 sell 300,000 on its first day alone? so if u cant stand to reason just loooook at the numbersss.

16. Salman Zafar unregistered

Point of no of units sold is not valid. When ipad came out. There was no competitor.

21. Lucas777

Posts: 2137; Member since: Jan 06, 2011

okay... so ur telling me just cause the ipad was so revolutionary and came out a year before any other manuacturer we should not give it the credit of selling?

26. aztaxia12295

Posts: 272; Member since: Nov 22, 2009

retarded is a strong word

29. tragichero

Posts: 163; Member since: Jan 07, 2011

@lucas777.... hes not trying to get anyone to think a laggy product is amazing..... first, i would say using the words "laggy product" is way over statement.... its hardly laggy..... and its only hardly laggy WHEN IT VIEWS FLASH CONTENT WHICH IPAD CANNOT! thats the point he is making...

30. tragichero

Posts: 163; Member since: Jan 07, 2011

and # of units sold doesnt determine whether the product is better than another by no means. there is a large amount of people out there that can be considered slaves to marketing and corporate america. if a turd in a box out sold the iphone would you then say that piece of poo is a better phone then the iphone..... poophone

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