In Defense of the Playbook... sort of

Lots of people are piling on RIM these days, and justifiably so thanks to some of their recent travails. But I want to plead my case for the Playbook, even though I'll concede right from the start that the device is incomplete.

I've lived with the Playbook for a little over a month now, and it is slowly replacing my laptop as my go-to device for email, surfing and wasting time trying to look cool at the coffee shop. Granted, the laptop is still the natural choice for content creation and dealing with my online college courses, but the convenience and ideal size of the Playbook are compelling.

I just wish it was a complete package. The hardware is really well-done (feels so much nicer in the hand than the Kindle fire despite their similar appearance). QNX is a very capable OS. The specs and feature set are still very impressive for a tablet, even after months on the market. But it feels unfinished. The app situation is abysmal, and the app store is not user-friendly. The device has GPS, but few apps to take advantage of it. There's Bluetooth, but only a few supported profiles. A nice front-facing camera, but no Skype to use it with. See what I mean by unfinished?

There have been many promises made about the Playbook concerning OS 2.0, but we've been there before with RIM. Tons of good intention that either gets hopelessly delayed or forgotten altogether.

So yes, I really like my Playbook. I'd like to really love my Playbook, but it needs to figure out what it wants to be first.