New BlackBerry Tablet Unlikely; PlayBook to Get BB10

BlackBerry, previously known as Research In Motion, has said that a new tablet powered by BlackBerry 10 is unlikely to come to fruition.

Speaking to the press during the BlackBerry 10 launch event, CEO Thorsten Heins conceded that the market is tough. "The tablet business is rather difficult," he stressed. He added the firm is only interested in investing areas it believes could be profitable.

That said, he isn't ruling out future possibilities for a tablet. "We want to provide a value proposition that is not just hardware, but software, too. What we’ll be doing in the tablet space is looking for specific services on top of the tablet — financial, healthcare verticals. We are still exploring various use cases for it."

"Personally, I think it's pretty futile at this point," said Ovum analyst Jan Dawson. "Like Apple, (BlackBerry) really has to make its margin on the device, but it can't charge a premium like Apple."

During April 2011, BlackBerry launched the PlayBook, but it ultimately failed to make an impact in the market. After heavily discounting the product, it shipped a paltry 255,000 units during 2012's third quarter.

While he didn't reveal a time frame, Heins confirmed that BlackBerry is preparing a BlackBerry 10 update for the PlayBook.

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  • house70
    "While he didn't reveal a time frame, Heins confirmed that BlackBerry is preparing a BlackBerry 10 update for the PlayBook."

    That's the problem. I don't think they're in the position to NOT provide a time frame. Instead, they should be coming out with firm deadlines for that: "we will release the BB10 update for Playbook on such-and-such date".
    That sounds way more encouraging for the (few) customers they have left.
  • anononon
    Agreed, and that is EXACTLY whats not helping their stock. Investors DO NOT like the idea of not having a known release date, myself included. Even if the release was a less than desirable date, we would still have insight- which we do not currently have.

    I am all for the new BB10 system, but if they want a prayer to survive out here they will have to open up the realities that we may or may not want to hear.

  • sykozis
    The problem with giving specific deadlines is the fact that they cause problems for development and PR/Marketing departments. If you set the deadline too soon, you risk having major issues to fix at launch....which cause a PR nightmare. If you set the deadline too far out, Marketing has to fight that challenge as well as simply trying to figure out how to sell a product. There's also the risk of missing the deadline due to unforeseen problems....

    Personally, if I'm looking to buy a product now, but it's manufacturer tells me it's going to get a major software upgrade 6 months from now, I'm going to assume the product is defective already. Or I'll simply have flashbacks to my HTC Trophy and the empty promise from MS that every phone would get 1 major OS version upgrade in it's life span....which turned out to be a lie from day 1.... Now I'm hearing rumors that my HTC Trophy might not even get WP7.8...
  • "During April 2011, BlackBerry launched the PlayBook, but it ultimately failed to make an impact in the market."----------->they ran to launch was expensive like ipad2 BUT the os was not perfect at that time.thats why it didnt make an impact.ALL thought it was a doomed tablet after the software problem but they were wrong!

    I bought it march 2012.At this moment playbook has the BEST HTML5 browser in tablets and the most usable (better than ios and android by far.with the 1 finger you can do anything really fast and easy) and stable OS after TONS of updates and optimization.
    Now we wait for BB10 to come with loooooots of apps.

    NOTE:new ipad sold less units than blackberry playbook last quarter if i remember correctly!!!(it is really cheap but VERY VERY good product now for this price)
  • halcyon
    Well, since I have a Playbook sitting around it's nice to know one day it'll get another update. May keep me from giving it away.
  • shqtth
    I use my playbook every day ;)

  • halcyon
    Occasionally the Playbook is nice to use to view my BB's messages but it really has no real value for me outside of that. My Note II makes the Playbook seem like a paperweight.
  • BlackBerry stock doesn't exactly depend on the PlayBook. Their honor does, though, because if they didn't provide the BB10 update for the PlayBook then the perception would be bad. However, last time I checked the company had sold almost 2 M tablets. Not much when compared to the iPad but still that's 2 M x $200 = $400 M. That's an offer that I wouldn't refuse.