Dell executive Joe Kremer has hit out at the iPad, claiming that the device is 'shiny' and attractive but undependable and difficult for businesses to support, according to the Australia Financial Review.

The Dell Australia managing director was speaking to reporters at a briefing in Sydney. "People might be attracted to some of these shiny devices," he said, referring to the iPad, "but technology departments can't afford to support them.

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"If you are giving a presentation and something fails on the software side, it might take four days to get it up and running again. I don't think this race has been run yet."

Whether or not realistic rivals to the iPad in the business space are likely to emerge in the near future, Dell is among the numerous companies that have had a go at dislodging Apple from its dominant market position. Its Dell Streak devices failed to make an impact. And RIM, which has an exemplary enterprise track record providing BlackBerry smartphones to business users, flopped badly when its BlackBerry PlayBook tablet sold badly.