RIM's $500m headache

RIM's 0m headache

Plenty has already been said about the damage the unsuccessful BlackBerry PlayBook has caused to Research in Motion's reputation, but in real financial terms RIM is currently in the hole to the tune of half a billion dollars.

That's the total value of the stockpile of PlayBooks RIM has made but can't sell – despite a series of price cuts to try and boost its appeal.

The BlackBerry PlayBook was announced in February running not BlackBerry OS but the new QNX platform, but far from being a bold stab into a new market, the PlayBook was panned from the start for being unfinished, with elementary basics such as native email and BBM support nowhere to be seen.

Unsurprisingly, sales have completely failed to take off, yet RIM has remained resolutely positive – which some have suggested is part of the problem.

And even in the face of RIM's admission that some $485m worth of PlayBooks are gathering dust on the shelves, the company was at it again this week.

“RIM is committed to the BlackBerry PlayBook and believes the tablet market is still in its infancy,” co-CEO Mike Lazaridis insisted.

“Although a number of factors have led to the need for an inventory provision in the third quarter, we believe the PlayBook, which will be further enhanced with the upcoming PlayBook OS 2.0 software, is a compelling tablet for consumers that also offers unique security and manageability features for the enterprise.”

Now if he could just get the rest of us to agree...

Read more about: Blackberry Playbook

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3 comments

Stelph  Dec. 4, 2011 at 15:38

rim, drop the price and i will be intereted, £150 woupd be lovely thanks

tongejonathan  Dec. 4, 2011 at 15:46

PlayBook is otherwise a fantastic tablet.. I own one and have showed it to my iPad friends for comparisons.. PlayBook is by far the best mobile tablet. It is ashame that it didn't have email and BBM on launch, but those features are not as easy to integrate as they are for relatively security-free Androids and Apples. Often your greatest strength is your greatest weakness.

RIM would have sold a few million more of this tablet had it not been for the media and Wall Street. The US really tried to ruin this one on purpose. There is reviews, and then there is biased reviews. I don't think anyone can honestly say RIM has had a fair deal in terms of reviews in the past year. Crappy Androids (outside a few good ones) are running around everywhere and everyone says buy one. Apple has issues and the iPad, seemingly dated, gets praise for being app-o-licious.

Stelph  Dec. 5, 2011 at 13:47

@ tongejonathan - What reviews were biased? Most/all the reviews I read were fair I felt as as you say, it is an excellent tablet with some great ideas and an amazing usability, however it was let down by obviously not being finished/ready when released (missing features show that) and also a very poor app support.

The system of being able to use Android apps on the playbook has been banded around as the playbooks savior but is still not out.

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