News that the BlackBerry PlayBook is being outsold 19:1 by the iPad is hardly a shock. Research in Motion’s [RIM] tablet, by no means a busted flush, has struggled to gain traction, with the company scoring an enormous own-goal by taking over six months to get it to market after its official announcement.
So, how can RIM rescue its ailing slate from the tech scrapheap? Here are five things it needs to do right now.
1 Slash the price
At £299 for the 16GB model, the PlayBook is already well below the iPad’s entry-level price. Shaving another £50 off that would make it a truly enticing proposition. RIM will have to pull this trick once Amazon’s bargain-bucket Kindle Tablet gets released.
Otherwise it’s going to be left looking on forlornly as its main tablet rivals sail off into the sunset.
2 Release the native email client now
That the PlayBook was allowed out of the door without a native email client is nothing short of criminal. RIM has promised an update to fix this ever since the PlayBook was released back in April and has pledged it’ll be here by the ‘end of summer’.
For those of you currently experiencing the onset of autumn, the BlackBerry-maker says summer ends September 22nd. It’d best get moving to make that deadline.
3 Get aggressive
There’s hardly been a peep from RIM’s marketing department about the PlayBook in recent months. Perhaps this is because of lukewarm reviews, but it’s by no means a poor device.
The company needs to crack on with getting its product into consumers’ faces and telling them why it’s worth having over an Android tablet or an iPad.
4 Talk up QNX
The PlayBook’s unique QNX OS is excellent. It’s easy to get to grips with, is built from the ground-up for touchscreen use and is one of the best things the company has ever created.
But it’s being done down as the focus switches to fusty old BlackBerry smartphones. QNX needs to be pushed as hard as the PlayBook itself, in order to prove why it’s as worthwhile as iOS and Android.
5 Fire up the rumour mill with talk of a successor
Chatter about a PlayBook 2 has been notable by its absence. A few calculated leaks about an updated device would give the current model increased media exposure and allow everyone to reassess it.
RIM is notorious for being as leaky as a sieve. Now it’s time the company used that to its advantage, otherwise it’s game over for the PlayBook.