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May 17, 2011

Blackberry Playbook to cost from £399

by Brian Turner

RIM has announced recommended retail prices for the Blackberry Playbook in the UK, with the 16GB starter priced at £399.

There will also be a 32GB model at £479, and the 64GB version will cost around £559.

This puts them in the exact same price point as the Apple iPad.

However, at around 7 inches wide, the Playbook screen is less than 75% the size of the iPad’s.

Additionally, while RIM traditionally pitch their devices at the enterprise market, at present their usual email and calendar applications will not work with the Playbook unless tethered to a Blackberry phone.

While RIM sold over 50,000 copies of the Playbook in the US on its launch day a month ago, the company has already recalled 1,000 devices because of a problem with the new OS used.

According to RIM, a number of the 16GB versions suffered problems with loading software due a glitch in the new QNX OS they were shipped with.

RIM is pushing on the Playbook being a success, not least as the company share price has lost nearly a quarter of value this year due to declining market share in the smart phone market.

However, OS bugs, smaller screens, and the inability to independently run RIM’s proprietary enterprise apps, are already putting a damper on what was already a very ambitious product launch.

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