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Video: RIM pits PlayBook against iPad

Research In Motion believes that the multi-core processor and real-time QNX operating system at the heart of its upcoming PlayBook tablet will leave the iPad standing - and has put its money where its mouth is in a head-to-head video.

The video, introduced by Matthew from RIM's web browser group and unveiled at the Web 2.0 Summit by RIM boss Jim Balsillie, demonstrates the rendering speed of various websites on both the iPad and the BlackBerry PlayBook - and there's no denying that the PlayBook has the edge, loading the page significantly quicker than Apple's tablet.

Matthew claims that both tablets are connected to the same wireless network and have a cleared cache, meaning that it's a fair a test as possible.

The test goes on to demonstrate the Flash support built in to the browser on the PlayBook, offering a much richer experience on the Adidas website than the Flashless iPad - although, it must be said, the Flash animations don't look as smooth as they would on a fully-fledged desktop or laptop browser.

The video goes on to demonstrate the technical improvements behind the browser, showing that - while both the iPad and the PlayBook score 100/100 on the Acid3 test - the PlayBook has pixel-perfect rendering, which is missing from Apple's WebKit-based iPad browser.

The Pocket Full of Canvas demo, which demonstrates the power of HTML5's Canvas function, is possibly the most impressive part of the video comparative: while the iPad loads the content OK, the animation is extremely jerky and all-but unwatchable - and considering that Apple head Steve Jobs positioned HTML5 as a fix for the lack of Flash on iOS based devices, that's embarrassing. The PlayBook, by comparison, runs the demo as smooth as silk.

Interestingly, Balsillie also suggested that the device could possibly be made to function as a smartphone, claiming that "its not the hardest thing in the world to do."

It's still early days for RIM's venture into the world of tablet computing, but if the real-world performance suggested in the video proves true, it could have a winner on its hands. Rumours of Near-Field Communications (NFC) technology and an as-yet unused 'module cavity' on the device, revealed by Balsillie at the Web 2.0 Summit just moments ago, suggest that Apple could be faced with a real competitor in 2011.

Don't just take our word for it however - check out the video below.