RIM Playbook Tablet Prices Slashed 50% As Sales Crash

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Struggling Canadian phone company Research In Motion has moved to slash the price of their BlackBerry Playbook tablet in half in an effort to shift stock.Shortly after announcing that profits had plunged 59%, sales 10% and their share value 19% the maker of the Blackberry smartphone started dropping the price of the Playbook with Canadian retailers, Australian discounts are expected to follow.

According to Electronista the Rogers retail chain has cut the tablet’s base price in half to $249 for a 16GB version while the 32GB and 64GB versions also got $250 and $300 discounts to $349 and $399 each.

The deal was identified as a “back-to-school” sale for employees that would last until December 1.

No clues have surfaced that would hint whether or not Rogers would drop the price for end users.

RIM promised a concerted campaign to lower the price and drive sales of the PlayBook, whose shipments collapsed to just 200,000 units at a time when even struggling Android tablets were faring better. Among them are loyalty deals for BlackBerry phone owners, corporate bundles, and rebates for general buyers.

A 2.0 firmware update and a video store are poised to address many of the original complaints about the tablet, but price has been a persistent factor. Many still equate size to price and have turned down the PlayBook in favor of the larger iPad, even if resolution is the only major disadvantage from a pure hardware perspective.

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