NEWS ANALYSIS: RIM is reportedly working on another BlackBerry PlayBook. But if and when that tablet launches, it is doomed to failure.
Research In Motion finds itself in a
disconcerting position. On one hand, it has a huge business that will need to
continue to churn out mobile products to keep its people employed and its
customers satisfied. But on the other hand, its products are losing their
appeal in the marketplace, and so far, even with a new CEO in Thorsten Heins,
the mobile firm has no ability to turn things around. Investors, analysts and
even employees are concerned that RIMs future is dour, at best.
A key component in RIMs failures lately
is its poor performance in the tablet space. Tablet sales are expected to
explode in the coming years, and RIM doesnt have the devicethe BlackBerry
PlayBookto capitalize on that boom.
Now, reports are swirling, claiming the
company will launch a new version of its tablet sometime this year. Details on
the device are slim at this point, but chances are, itll
ship with BlackBerry PlayBook OS 2.0
, the latest version of the companys
tablet software, which launched Feb. 21. Its also quite likely the tablet
will focus heavily on enterprise customers.
Still, its chances of succeeding are
slim, at best. The BlackBerry PlayBook 2 will fail
1. Look at the first version
In order for future tablets to succeed,
their predecessors must sell well. Unfortunately for RIM, its BlackBerry
PlayBook is having a tough time on store shelves. And those that bought the
device havent been so impressed. Given that, how can RIM expect its next
tablet to succeed?
2. The enterprise doesnt care
RIM said last year when it launched the BlackBerry PlayBook
that it was trying to appeal to the
enterprise. Theres just one issue: The enterprise doesnt care about the
device. When the BlackBerry PlayBook 2 launches, it too will try to target
enterprise users, and theyll likely turn their backs.
3. Consumers really dont care
If the enterprise is ignoring the
BlackBerry PlayBook, consumers are really
against the device. Right now,
only Apples iPad, the Amazon Kindle Fire and the Samsung Galaxy Tabs are
successful. Beyond that, consumers couldnt care less about the tablets on
store shelves. Thats bad news for RIMand its even worse news for its next
4. RIM seems ready to sell
After all the turmoil RIM has faced over the last several months
and its declining stock price weighing
heavily on investors minds, the company seems closer than ever to selling off
its hardware business. If and when that happens, itll make it even harder for
the next PlayBook to succeed.