Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Blackberry PlayBook Tablet (RIM) disappearing from online retailers in the US

According to the recent reports, Research in Motion's Blackberry tablet (BB PlayBook) has started disappearing from many major online retailers and the US, and even in Canada. The tablet that was not successful in today's market has been pulled from retailers such as Walmart, Best Buy, Staples, and RadioShack. Office Depot has the PlayBook listed as out of stock.

In Canada, RIM's home country, only the 32GB model is available on the websites of retailers Futureshop and Best Buy Canada, at a discounted rate of C$149.99 ($153). The 16GB and 64GB PlayBook models are apparently out of stock. In spite of all of this, the tablet is still being listed on RIM's own online store.

When major news outlets such as Engadget and ComputerWorld reached out for comment, they got no response.

From the start, the PlayBook was not a very successful tablet. At first it was listed as too high of a price, with $500 for only the 16 GB model. Sales have done poorly since then. PlayBook sales dropped to about 130,000 in RIM's most recent fiscal quarter, which ended on Sept. 1.

There are a lot of thoughts drawn from the information above. Some people think that this is the end of the PlayBook, while others are thinking that this could be a sign of a new version of the tablet. The company's stock of PlayBooks may have run out, and the company may be getting ready to launch a new version of the tablet, said Bob O'Donnell, program vice president for clients and displays at IDC. He goes on to say that if there was to be a new tablet, it would feature RIM's new BlackBerry 10 operating system, which is set to ship on smartphones later this year.

RIM said in August it would refresh the PlayBook lineup with an LTE model that would be initially available through Canadian carriers and in other countries at a later date. The PlayBook LTE model is already available through Canadian carriers, and is listed on RIM's as "coming soon" to the U.S. Despite this, the new model has not been outed in retail online stores.

In early October RIM pushed out an update to the BlackBerry PlayBook OS, version 2.1, for the LTE and existing Wi-Fi only versions of the tablet. The update includes features such as the ability to compose SMS messages when connected to a BlackBerry smartphone over Bluetooth. Also in this update was improved support for Android applications.

Ok, so I've shown you some input from a "expert". Now I want to know what you think is going to happen. Let me know of your thoughts in the comments below.

Source: Engadget and ComputerWorld