BlackBerry PlayBook Tablet borrows gestures, cards from webOS | webOS Nation

BlackBerry PlayBook Tablet borrows gestures, cards from webOS 74

by Dieter Bohn Tue, 26 Oct 2010 10:37 am EDT


Our pals at have posted up the full video demo of the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet from the AdobeMAX conference and we couldn't help notice a few ...familiar... things. First up, the running apps minimize into, well, cards that you can move left and right on the screen. Yes, the card view contains a quick-launch bar on the bottom as well. How to you get to that view? ....swipe up from the bottom. Jump to 3:10 to see it.

We can't speak to whether we're in patent territory here, but it's not crazy to ask. If nothing else, HP needs to get the PalmPad out quickly, lest RIM take too much of their thunder away. Video after the break!

Source:; Thanks Unknown!



Looks like a nice device. Looks like not this xmas, but possibly next xmas will be the battle of the tablets once they all come down a bit in price.

They are demonstrating what awesome technology WebOS has. Pity they squandered a 2 year lead. But I still love the OS.

hopefully HP / Palm gets to market first, that would crush any desire to come out with the product.

In other news, it's been revealed that Microsoft is collecting $10-15 PER PHONE from HTC and other handset makers that use Android, as 'protection money' against patent lawsuits from Microsoft....

Too bad hp is too much of a 'nice guy'

what will it take for developers to port and to make more apps for webos besides improving hardware and release apis....
If it comes down to number of users, then webos might be in trouble. Blackberry os got great makeover, android maybe will get there with couple more updates. Will they be willing to change to webOS just because it multitask better? I hope so.
I'm staying with webOS Just because it is orignal and multitasKING os. The only thing I miss is quality productive apps, which I guess are not coming since developers look for profit and webOS don't have as many users as android.

WebOS does lack brand name Apps. HP/Palm needs to look at iTunes top 100 Apps under all Categories and pay all of those developers to port them over to WebOS. It is embarrassing how few Sports Apps are available considering the WebOS has been around for over a 1-1/2 years.

I sense A copyright lawsuit coming.......

Impressive....But I am still going to wait for a WebOS tablet....

I see that the cards is not as smooth as in webOS but drags a bit. the webOS tablet will BE a LOT better. I will wait for the Palm tablet to become available before buying anything else. webOS 4ever!!!

Yeah, I noticed that too. The animation is choppy and the response to the touch is pretty poor (The pinch to zoom response in that first app was killing me). Say what you will, but WebOS actually responds fairly nicely to swipes and gestures. PlayBook is currently laggy as molasses (though, honestly, I'm sure RIM is probably working on fixing that).

I also very much dislike the "swipe then move" nature of their gesturing. It makes it seem too disconnected.

wonder how long it takes for HP to slap patent lawsuits.. It's one thing to mess with a small companies patents it's another when that small company becomes a part of the largest computer company in the world with money for Apples lawyers.. Lol

Wow HP. Your move.

This is just an imitation...furthermore,want to clarify here.In my opinion,it'll be a minor threat for HP.First, the blackberry OS 6 is still premature,compared to webOS( such as SDK and fragmentation), it is just a risk taking move by RIM to invest into tablet.Second,try to think another way, when everyone talking about the Playbook copy the card ideas from HP Palm,it has indirectly promoting webOS. Lastly, this miltitasking format on Playbook, I think it looks more similar to Coverflow by apple or Google's Chromium OS.

In contrast, HP can imitate their moves as well,since they still haven't show their last cards (in poker). In the history of HP,they have good record on touchscreen tablet,like the convertible series. In my opinion, it'll not be surprise to see Touchsmart(for media)+webOS(for major functions) combination in the new HP tablet....

The BlackBerry PlayBook is actually running QNX and not BB OS6. QNX is said to be very similar to webOS. Hopefully, HP will not rush a webOS tablet to market just to beat RIM to the punch. They need to make a great Tablet to gain market share and not a mediocre one.

If Palm had made the original Pre like the Pre Plus. They would still be an independent Company today...

"Legally", i can't say anything about patent all I'll say is (as publically known) a big reason HP purchased palm was for their intellectual property...hint hint

Everybody wants to be webOS but there only 1 webOS.. And ppl are going to start realizing that next yr with the HP hardware blitz ;)

If I had to work every day with that dude in the purple shirt I would probably end up putting the beat down on him after the 3rd day.

a. noy. ing.

I agree.

He reminded me of a bobble head doll, the way he kept shaking his head at every word.

WebOS wanna be...

Look at them acting like multitasking is something new. What other device can run multiple apps at the same time? hmmmm...

So are we feeling flattered or pissed.

I'm hoping HP is pissed. I know I would be.


+ 1

It's nice to see Blackberry trying to ketch up and "imitation is the sincerest form of flattery" but it's just that, cheap imitation. Much like how the Torch is in many ways a Pre knock-off. (not innovative) This is merely WebOs Multitasking at it's core, but not executed as nicely as WebOs does.

HP does need to get their tablet out quick. People need to SEE WebOs, so they can see how superior it is compared to other OS's. Sadly if they don't hurry many with think, WebOs is like the Playbook" not "The Playbook is like Webos." It's still a small portion of individuals have experience WebOs.

And HP needs to sue Blackberry just to scare them from stealing more things from Palm. Does Blackberry not have any of their own innovations?

This makes me mad and flattered and mad and flattered and mad and flattered, I'm so confused!

It's: "I don't know... I'm CONFUUUUUUUUUSED!"

Everyone is copying what Palm did 2 years ago. It is very sad. HP should do something.

They are doing something they are standing by and letting RIm show them how to do it right as far as marketing goes...this really nice.

Dang....that was hot. Especially with Adobe Air built into the OS. That was one (huge) thing that I've been hoping webos would do. It would increase the OS's possibilities tremendously!!! That said, I'm still a WebOs fan...die hard. But I have to say, I think other companies are starting to take advantage of HP's "downtime" with WebOs because they know its potential (hats off to Palm, truly revolutionary) aaannnd they know it can never be purely duplicated. However the closer they get, the softer the HPalm sting.

Don't forget that this whole "card view" thing is also a lot like Windows Flip 3D that was introduced with Vista, which was well before WebOS. And Microsoft probably got the idea from somewhere else too, so I'm guessing that someone else is pissed that Microsoft, HPalm, and RIM all stole their idea.

I will be getting an iden phone because of my job I smashed a few pres but the webos tablet I'll be waiting for it

Even if HP doesn't decide to sue over this, they need to at least come out and SAY they're thinking about a possible lawsuit. I agree with one of the posters above; if they let this slide, public perception will shift and they'll mock HP/Palm for being copycats.

I think they should sue. By the time HP/Palm's tablet comes out, they'll have a damn hard time convincing the public that their tablet is superior. By that time, the competing technology will be entrenched.

This worries me. I know that most above think that WebOS will triumph in the end, but I am not so sure. Problem is, no one cares who had "it" first. WebOS is not very well known, especially compared to Blackberry.

As more popular companies start to take the elements that make WebOS stand apart, it is less likely that those familiar with a brand will look to change OS, especially to a "new" relatively unknown OS. (Even if it was first and not "new".) I mean, the ONLY reason I changed from BB to Palm was because I wanted a touchscreen with a physical keyboard and didnt like android. I am SO glad I did, I LOVE WebOS now (MUCH more than BB). But if BB had a touchscreen (on Sprint)had Palm had not had something that stood out, I wouldnt have ever looked Palms way.

If I was HPalm, I would get on the ball NOW. Once even the hype of a Blackberry Tablet is out to the general public, it is unlikely that many from the general public would want to buy a random HP device that they have never heard of over a "sleek new blackberry" that already has tons of App support.

But who knows; this is just my opinion.

"i'm a new webos user. it's nice that hp/palm thought enough of the new blackberry playbook cards and gestures to use it on hp/palm phones."

not really a new user, but "see what i did there"?

This kind of stuff brings to light the fact that what most people around here think is a great webOS innovation is really just a user interface feature - one that is not really novel. Ever seen Cover Flow? Apple purchased it and introduced it into iTunes in 2006:

So, there is nothing really novel about the cards. There's no reason to get excited about seeing it on other devices.

It's becoming clear that HP/Palm must truly innovate like mad in order to differentiate themselves in light of these devices popping out all over the place. Things like Just Type and Exhibition. Their stated intention to expand WebOS into everything should no longer be thought of as a goal to make money, but a mandate for survival in the smartphone/tablet market, and to some extent in the enterprise market. It's clear HP must out-innovate Apple. Time is not their friend. "Hurry" is an understatement...

Great point. And at least with Stacks they have something to directly point to and say "hey, they're copying us and that's flattering, but we still do it better." They just need to keep that up and continue to innovate and improve on their ideas and differentiating features.

there is nothing novel about cards, but there are some things novel about how a "touch screen" devices handles the cards

Except that as a OS-level interface to indicate multiple applications running at once, it was novel when Palm intro'd it with WebOS. Of course it's not novel now with everyone and their mom aping it.

I searched for Coverflow patents. Nada.

Found this a few months ago during PalmCast.

Nice find. Time to bring the pain, HP.

It truly is a rip off and I can see people already thinking that blackberry came up with it. Hp does need to act. But the way they can act is by putting it out there that the new tablet they're coming out with was born and bred by the card multitasking innovated by the Palm Pre. Put the blatant infringement front and forward for the consumers to see and let the people see that blackberry was biting off Palm. Tech folks like us know this already but the general public may not. Plus, hp needs to show their substance over style and show how card multitasking is supposed to be.

That's the height of the news around here, bitching about other hardware that's actually being demonstrated and released? I suppose when your company releases their latest product in the last country they actually released the previous gen hardware in that makes sense.

webOS didn't use the card metaphor first, they just use it best.

"webOS didn't use the card metaphor first, they just use it best."

That's a good point. And I think that they will continue to do so. At least we know that they've already improved the tech in a novel way with 2.0 (Stacks). There's nothing to indicate that going forward they won't continue to refine their ideas in ways that the competition won't expect. I think that more than this "sue 'em HP!" approach, continuing to innovate the metaphor and make it more and more useful is the best way to combat those companies who wish to "flatter" Palm by appropriating their UI/UX design metaphors.

LAWSUIT!!! If it appears far too much like WebOS, then HP should sue. HP needs to get on the ball and demo their WebOS tablet soon or they will get left behind in the tablet category as well as Smartphones.

you can't file suit against someone for and invention because you did it first, you have to have a patent...however, the company that copied it cannot get a patent unless they improved the invention

I'm giving HP the benefit of the doubt, that said... if HP don't hint or teases the webos tablet soon, it would confirm that all they care about is selling printers and ink. mind share is slipping away (even more)

What HPalm needs to do is come up with a catchy name for cards & trademark the Name! Then anyone who uses it has to refer to it by name.. Like Kleenex, Xerox copy, etc.. And users will ask for that feature by name..
So get creative & post some names here like:
*Flying Toaster Cards (remember that screen saver?)
*My Palm Cards
*Just Cards.. & Just Type
*Cards R Us ( don't know how to reverse the R?)

This is what kills me about patents. How can you patent a "concept"? Let's assume that RIM did not steal any of the code to implement this so we don't have to deal with that.

More importantly how can you prove that a concept is infringing on a patent? You can't just say "well, it looks and operates kind of the same" does there have to be some bar level that has to be achieved to show infringement?

Thank God the first football team to throw a forward pass was not able to patent it and not allow other teams to use it too.

It is more than just a concept, a user must physically contact the device in order for the device to display multiple "cards," the actual code does not matter as you can perform the same functionality using different algorithms, as long as a physical device is performing some type of processing that results in an effect related to the physical device, it is eligible to be patented.

to mikey... ummmm... nice analogy? (insert confused smiley here)

Yeah, completely off the wall analogy (or as my wife calls them a "nonalogy" ;-) ).

I saw this video in an engadget article and was aghast at how blatantly they had ripped off WebOS. Swiping up from a gesture area to minimize to cards and pull up the shortcut bar? I mean honestly. That's the kind of thing that REALLY should be licensed.

Cover flow and Alt tab were around before webos cards. people don't get bent out of shape Palm didn't invent this idea.

Cover flow was used to show music and pictures and sometimes folders. Alt-tab (up until Vista for mainstreamers and XP Powertoys for tweakers) was just a row of icons. You're right that Palm didn't come up with the idea from the aether, but they did apply it in a novel way (fully interactive way to show the running applications on an operating system), and that is actually what invention is most of the time.

Well this is def absurd but even still Im not sure whos going to buy a blackberry tablet. I know I wont. Blackberry is not associated with "hip" technology. Pass.

Ah WebOS Faithful, are we really suprised? Everyone is always going to borrow a good idea. In this era its all about mindshare and visibility, you can harp on all you like about how its a webOS knockoff - and it is - hands down, but.... the point is, RIM is now SEEN as the first company to use card "true" matter what H/Palm bring out, everyone is going primarily think of the playbook, not the Palmpad.

I live in London and I'm a doctor, in the past year since the Pre came out, I've rotated through 3 different hospitals and not met anyone else using a Pre, everyone has an Iphone or an android handset...most people see the Pre and ask "what is that???"

I'm just pissed off H/Palm have once again dropped the ball on SELLING the key features and strengths of WebOS, they have ZERO visibility right now. Damage done.

You have hit the nail on the head. Palm dropped the ball and now that other companies have had ample time to emulate webOS features, there is no reason to switch to a webOS phone. Without enough users to justify the effort, there is no reason for developers to create apps for webOS. Palm had 18 months lead time to do something with their innovative OS to gain market share and they struck out. Even though webOS is still better at the moment, they have no mindshare and will never lure the app developers from Android or iPhone. However, Android and iPhone are more than capable of copying the best features of webOS. I'm afraid it is probably too late for Palm.

I hope, HP/Palm has the patents and will sue them into the ground...

that's a huge and nice screen to make a presentation. Thats how you make a great business impact on people

Hell with the tablets, if their smart Rim should put this Qnx OS on their blackberrys it will be a "killer" for them and i'm not talking about Iphone!

Ummmm I have a question??? Does anyone remember some of the things that Palm "borrowed" from Apple? Pinch to zoom? iTunes sync? I'm just sayin...

Palm stole the Pre's video editing from Apple.

I've been waiting a long time to finially see the specs on the webos tablet & it's finally here. Sweet, hp is letting blackberry build it's webos tablet.
I didn't know hp was licensing webos out to rim...

maybe it won't be such a bad idea to license out webos.

Lol first the torch and now this. If HP doesnt do anything, i mean even rumors of a suit, im will lose all respect for them.

Well you better get started.

There is no reason why tablets shouldn't use Mac OS X's expose-style viewing for selecting applications/windows. Don't make me scroll through a list when I could just be tapping the window I want.

am glad that I don't have an iphone or android because that wouldn't make my phone special and fuck it if they have shit load of apps I can move around my apps with one swipe yay the pre best phone

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This is great by the way, because when the PalmPad comes out there will be an argument of who did it first. And obviously non-webOS'ers will find out.

I downloaded the SDK to checkout the platform. It's complete garbage, just like every other platform RIM has produced.

WebOS is state of the art, and I am confident it will prevail with the release of modern hardware. But who knows, people still seem to be buying BB phones with that nasty software.