Despite whatever hot air RIM CEO Jim Basillie may be spouting, RIM offering up to $300 off the PlayBook (considerably more than a 50% price drop) is not a sign that they have the market by the tail.
Retailers are gearing up for a big-time price drop on RIM’s PlayBooks, hoping to clear out unsold inventory and spark up a little interest in the struggling tablet. According to AppleInsider:
[quote]Big-box retailer Staples will begin a sale on Friday for RIM’s PlayBook tablet in the BlackBerry maker’s home country of Canada. The 16GB, 32GB and 64GB models of the device will sell for $199, $299 and $399, respectively. According to a photo of an advertisement sent by an AppleInsider reader, the sale will run until Dec. 1.[/quote]
RIM shipped 200,000 PlayBooks last quarter, falling far below analysts’ expectations that they’d move 400,000 to 600,000 of the tablets. It’s no secret that all tablets on the market are having a hard time putting a dent in the iPad’s ridiculously big lead, but RIM may also be hoping to position themselves against other up and comers like the Amazon Kindle Fire. The new product from Amazon (which has met with mixed reviews) clocks in with a $199 price point, which is where the 16GB PlayBook will fall after the above-mentioned rebate. Critics seem to feel that the only real challenger for the iPad this gift-giving season will be the Fire, and it would come as no big surprise if RIM was hoping to drink a bit of their milkshake. Nevertheless, it’s a tough time for RIM and if they can’t pull an ace card out of their sleeve soon they may find themselves running out of room to do much except fold.