RIM co-CEO Jim Balsillie has spoken with Bloomberg about the soon-to-be-released BlackBerry PlayBook, which goes on sale tomorrow in the US. It was launched at a glitzy party last week in New York, but received a largely negative response from critics.
Some have suggested that the BlackBerry PlayBook has been rushed out. The 7in tablet doesn’t yet have an email client, for example, though accessing email is possible if you already happen to have a BlackBerry phone.
Responding to those allegations, Balsillie said: “I don’t think that’s fair. A lot of the people that want this want a secure and free extension of their BlackBerry.” Er, what about everyone else? Owning an iPhone isn’t a prerequisite for accessing any of the iPad’s features; that'd be nuts. Jim added: "We'll have an over the air email client to announce very, very soon."
Comparing the 7in BlackBerry PlayBook to the 10in iPad 2, Jim said: “This is superior. It’s far more portable, it’s lighter in your hands, you can hold it for longer.”
We love our forecasts here on Mobot. Alkesh Shah of Evercore Partners reckons RIM will punt 250,000 BlackBerry Playbooks by the end of its current fiscal quarter (which ends in May), and 5.4 million over its fiscal year.
Gartner, meanwhile, predicts that the BlackBerry PlayBook will grab 10% of the tablet market by 2015, with the iPad accounting for less than half, on 47%. That’ll equate to 29 million and 138 million sales respectively.
The BlackBerry Playbook is expected to land in the UK in Juneish.