Failure is the one single word that perhaps best describes the Blackberry PlayBook tablet from RIM so far. The lack of basic features like email, which is the most basic application that one expects from a tablet, has been the primary reason for consumers to not invest on the PlayBook. Those who have already purchased this device are reported to be utterly discontent. RIM hasn’t done much either to help ease the dismal situation when it announced that the much needed update won’t be ready before February 2012. The update is keenly awaited as it is expected to cover the lack of email feature, while also allow for Android App support on the PlayBook. The recent breakdown of BlackBerry servers has also dealt a blow to consumer confidence of all things RIM, and PlayBook shares the negative perception of the company that has come to grow in consumers’ minds.
Retail partners who have stocked the Playbook are trying every charm in their knowledge to sell off the remaining stock and slashing price is the most time tested method of pushing sales, something that has always worked in the past. Sadly, the PlayBook is emerging as an exception to this, as sales have not accelerated significantly so far, in spite of vendors cutting prices by $200 and $150 in the US and the UK respectively.
After a small rise in sales, the figures have settled down to the disappointing levels it was at before the discounted prices were announced. Maybe a HP TouchPad esque price cut can liven things up with the PlayBook. Right now, one needs to connect to a Blackberry Smartphone to get some of the common features that one gets on any tablet PC today sporting a similar price tag. After all, the lack of what can be said as common tablet features such as contact database, native email, chat app, or 3G connectivity is proving too costly for the PlayBook to miss out on. With the release of the 2.0 OS version, this may help reverse the tides in favor of RIM.
However, that is to be seen.