Blackberry PlayBook Tablet Review
Blackberry’s foray into tablets has some bright spots, but a lot of issues as well.
The video controls are basic enough, allowing you to scrub through your video, play/pause, or set them to repeat using the virtual controls at the bottom of the screen (or change the volume with the physical controls on the top of the tablet). Should you decide to display them on a larger screen, the microHDMI port allows easy connectivity to external displays. The possibility also exists for you to record your own videos, using either the forward or backward-facing cameras on the tablet itself.
All videos are managed in a simple layout that sorts your videos based on whether or not they were downloaded or user created. Once in that screen, you will notice your videos are tiled with a preview frame in each one. It's nothing fancy, but it gets the job done well, and it is a breeze finding which video you're looking for.
Refreshingly, the Blackberry PlayBook seems to have native support for quite a few video playback formats, including: MPEG,.flv,.avi,.wmv, and.divx. While further updates or applications may or may not expand this, you should be able to watch most of your library of video files with this array of formats.
Unlike the Blackberry PlayBook 's iOS-based competitors, the PlayBook comes pre-loaded with a YouTube application that feels very natural and easy to use. If you haven't touched the screen in about 1 second after the clip starts, it enters into full screen without any controls showing to clutter up your viewing experience, but you can tap the screen to call them back out.
Video Battery Life
Due to screen brightness alterations that we cannot fully explain, the Blackberry PlayBook 's battery life seems to be better while displaying video content than eBooks, lasting over two hours longer in our video battery test than in our eBook battery test. If you decide to watch movies on your tablet, you should be able to squeeze over 8 hours and 20 minutes out of your tablet if you turn the wireless off and crank the backlight. As always, your mileage may vary if you decide to leave the wireless on, or if you decide that you can live with a screen that's a little more dim than it's maximum output.
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