Tablets: iPad 2 vs. Xoom vs. PlayBook vs. WebOS Slates


Apple iPad 2

The iPad 2 starts with two distinct advantages over these rivals. First--there is already an iPad in existence and it has been a tremendous success. The culture is already established, and many companies are either already using the iPad, or are at least exploring the use of the Apple tablet for business. Second--because it is a second generation of an existing tablet, there is at least something tangible to measure it by, and a more concrete expectation that it will be available this spring based on Apple's standard annual product lifecycle.

Speculation has been abundant on the iPad 2 since the original iPad launched. Given the general user feedback, and the features and functions the competition is bringing to the tablet arena, it is expected to have dual cameras, , a significant bump in RAM, and possibly a massive increase in the resolution of the display.

Where does that leave us? Well, every device on this list is either vaporware or pure speculation at this point. Given the demand for the iPad, and the expected, it seems reasonable to believe that companies of Motorola, HP, Apple, and RIM's caliber can follow through and deliver sometime this year.

For businesses looking to hop on board the tablet bandwagon, the decision between the various platforms will be driven largely by the existing infrastructure and culture. An organization that has BlackBerry Enterprise Server in place and relies mostly on BlackBerry smartphones is likely to choose the BlackBerry PlayBook, while a company that has already embraced the iPhone and/or the original iPad would logically stick with the iOS platform.