Will BlackBerry 10 reinvent the BlackBerry PlayBook?
With a low-price tag and a BlackBerry 10 update confired, is RIM's PlayBook about to be re-invented?
The BlackBerry PlayBook never really took off as expected, a fact even RIM will now openly admit. But can the launch of BlackBerry 10, which the PlayBook will be getting, reinvent the tablet?
One UK retailer – a firm called Context – claims that RIM’s now-ultra-cheap PlayBook out-sold Apple’s fourth-generation iPad over 2012's Xmas period.
According to Context, the PlayBook shifted 160,000 units and the latest-generation iPad 113,000 units over the Christmas period, giving RIM a fairly substantial lead.
RIM’s PlayBook consistently lost ground to Apple’s iPad throughout 2011, and then to Amazon’s Kindle Fire and Google’s Nexus 7 in 2012. The hardware was there, that much was obvious, but there’s more to consumer tech than what appears on a device’s spec-sheet.
This could be down to the fact that RIM’s PlayBook costs just £129 for the 64GB version and Apple’s 16GB iPad 4 costs £399.
Could it also be because users, savvy with RIM’s plans for BlackBerry 10, are buying up the PlayBook for next to nothing in order to get some BB10 love once it’s rolled out?
Perhaps – although we’d readily admit that the former theory is more likely.
RIM has yet to confirm when BlackBerry 10 for the PlayBook will be rolling out. It could be awhile – maybe even as late as Q2 or Q3. Hopefully we’ll hear more about RIM’s BlackBerry 10 plans for the PlayBook at today’s BB10 launch event.
Expectation is high with RIM’s new OS and hardware receiving full support for networks and carriers all over the globe.
Could this be the start of something big for RIM’s ailing BlackBerry brand?
Even if it isn’t £130 for a 64GB tablet device with spec and hardware as good as the PlayBook is still a massive bargain – even more so when you consider all the benefits BlackBerry 10 will introduce.
Now all we need is a concrete rollout schedule for BB10 on the PlayBook.