Blackberry Playbook prices being cut again

The Blackberry Playbook continues to be a drain on Research in Motion's resources. The seven inch tablet has been a sales failure since it was first launched in the spring of 2011. RIM has since tried to sell off the tablets via temporary sales. During the holiday season the price for a Playbook Tablet was just $199 for the cheapest model. In January RIM changed its strategy and priced all of its Playbooks $299 no matter what the hard drive storage number war.

Now RIM is changing this up once again with a new sale that will last until at least February 11. The Blackberry online store has the Playbook's 16 GB version priced down once again to $199.  The 32 GB version is now down to $249 and the 64 GB version keeps its earlier $299 price tag.

Will this new change help the Playbook? At this stage, nothing will likely boost sales until RIM pulls an HP and cuts the price of the Playbook down to at least $99. Meanwhile we are still waiting for RIM to release the big Blackberry Playbook 2.0 software update that will add Android app support, among other new features. It's currently scheduled to be released later this month.

Report a problem with article
Previous Story

Microsoft wants your Windows Phone marketing ideas

Next Story

PS Vita demo units now available at GameStop stores

17 Comments

Commenting is disabled on this article.

Actually, they're discounting the current models to blow out inventory in anticipation of the new PlayBook 2.0, which will feature a faster CPU (1.5GHz) and LTE connectivity - coming April of this year.

Meanwhile, the existing units have been flying off the shelves at the discounted prices. Try finding one at your local Best Buy, Staples or Office Depot. They've all sold out of their current stock (though I've heard BB is restocking in some regions). Your best bet to find one is online direct from RIM.

I was lucky to grab my 32GB model (last one available at OD) and was so impressed by the fluid UI (must be seen to be believed), desktop-caliber browser (scores close to the current Chrome on HTMLtest.com) and multitasking (QNX destroys Android and iOS in this regard) that I grabbed a second one as a backup/tablet for the wife to use instead of constantly stealing mine. She likes it so much she had me return her Galaxy Tab 10.1 to Costco.

I only regret not grabbing two more units for the kids - my daughter is obsessed with "Bubble Blast" on the PlayBook while my son wants to compete online in Modern Warfare HD. My personal favorite is Asphalt 6. Finally, a game that allows me to drive like I do in real life. :-)

RCK

Finally someone who gets it. Just because its on sale doesn't mean doom and gloom. It means they're selling at a loss to increase the user base.

Also any time you hear from someone who owns one, they love it. Its always the peanut gallery who just read news articles (or hate on RIM because its the popular thing to do right now) that have bad opinions.

Spyder said,
Finally someone who gets it. Just because its on sale doesn't mean doom and gloom. It means they're selling at a loss to increase the user base.

Also any time you hear from someone who owns one, they love it. Its always the peanut gallery who just read news articles (or hate on RIM because its the popular thing to do right now) that have bad opinions.

Yeah. Those who keep putting it down have never actually used one for any real time. They speak from ignorance.

Spyder said,
Finally someone who gets it. Just because its on sale doesn't mean doom and gloom. It means they're selling at a loss to increase the user base.

Also any time you hear from someone who owns one, they love it. Its always the peanut gallery who just read news articles (or hate on RIM because its the popular thing to do right now) that have bad opinions.

Well, frankly, I didn't set out to buy a PlayBook. My heart was set on a Transformer Prime. However, with a limited time window in which to buy something (I live overseas and I had only a month to test/choose/buy), I couldn't wait for ASUS to get their act together and actually ship the thing to retailers.

So I looked for alternatives. My first stop was the aforementioned Tab 10.1. However, I found the Honeycomb UI laggy and the form factor awkward and not all that portable. For example, try using one in the car while munching on McDonald's and using their public wifi - simply too big/cumbersome for true mobile use.

I then remembered that the PlayBook was on sale, so I started looking for one to test drive. The local Office Depot was out of stock as was Staples, however, I finally found a shop nearby that still had a few 16GB models. For $199 it was worth taking the plunge, and after getting to know the unit - and upgrading to the PB OS 2.0 dev preview - I knew I had made the right choice. The Tab 10.1 went back shortly thereafter (gotta luv Costco's 90 day policy) and I later exchanged the 16GB for a 32GB model before buying another 16GB (Sprint store special - last one in stock) for the wife.

For me, the PlayBook is the perfect combination of portability and power. QNX is by far the most responsive tablet OS out there, and as an OS purist I appreciate its solid technical underpinnings. RIM will get a lot of mileage out of this OS, and once the phones transition over to it the "lack" of apps (though recently there's a slew of new releases to play with) will be resolved in short order.

Note: I'm not alone in my sentiments. For some insight into the state of the RIM's customer base, drop by crackberry.com and check out their forums. Very active PlayBook community with lots of testimonials and plenty of supportive dialogue.

RCK

Good prices considering the hardware.... Still with the software and its lack of features i don't want one. even at a price level of $99 I would have to think twice...

alexalex said,
According to New York Times RIM is going the way of the Dodo, Atari, Palm, Walkman...

isn't walkman just a name that Sony used not a different company?

smoledman said,
Playbooks are deader then dead.

Telus just sold out their entire stock of Playbook 16s and 32s in just one day.... Idiot.

During the holiday season the price for a Playbook Tablet was just $199 for the cheapest model. In January RIM changed its strategy and priced all of its Playbooks $299 no matter what the hard drive storage number war.

Wording mistake....?

But yeah, that thing won't sell no matter what in my opinion....