Friday, September 16, 2011

Playbook To Get Price Cut & That Won't Be Enough, It's Over


Playbook has already been clobbered in the tablet market by the iPad.  There is no double that about.  And if you don't want an iPad, you buy an Android tablet.  At $500, there is a lot of competition for RIM's Playbook which only comes in at 7".

And despite just how well built or how solid the specs are, no apps means no apps means only the most dedicated RIM fanboys will buy it. And even then, they have had to suffer through an incomplete OS.  In yesterday's financial call where RIM unveiled a profitable but admittedly difficult quarter in the numbers of Blackberries and Playbooks shipped, actions were promised.

First, RIM only managed to ship 200K Playbooks after shipping 500K in the previous quarter.  That's a lot of channel stuffing.  See, folks, "shipped" is a term most often used by tech companies to make the number appear impressive.  More importantly, we want to know just how many are actually sold to consumers and not shipping in warehouses and on shelves.

Coming in at $500, the same price as most other 10" tablets with better ecosystems, the 7" Playbook doesn't really have a prayer.  And it may already be too late even with the promise of price cut in the forms of rebates (who does rebates anymore?!) and incentives (likely subsidies), how long can RIM really take the Playbook?

As I've said before, 7" Honeycomb tablets are beginning to make their way to the market and I'm sure Android 4 tablets with similar sizes should be all the rage.  Why?  Because they're going to be selling around $300 to $350.

RIM has to realize that the $499 price point is the new $999.  Tablets priced at $499 needs to be better than anything else on the market.  The Playbook's 7" screen and dismal ecosystem with its incomplete OS just won't cut it.

Playbook has been knocked out by the iPad and 7" Android tablets will simple make sure it doesn't get back up.

RIM's last chances are the QNX superphones.  Focus on that, guys.  Please, I want to believe.

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