In an attempt to drain its tumorous stock of unsold BlackBerry PlayBook tablets, Research In Motion has slashed the price of all models to $299 on its official BlackBerry store website. That means the 16GB, 32GB and 64GB model all cost $299.
While $299 is obviously still more expensive than the $199 price (for a refurbished 16GB PlayBook) that we saw during the holiday buying season, this is quite obviously a good deal — if saving money is your primary objective. The 64GB model originally retailed for $699, so this sale delivers a more than 50 percent price-cut on that model, and $200 off a new 16GB PlayBook.
This move is only RIM’s latest attempt to shed itself of the unwanted PlayBook. In the past, it has offered a buy-two-get-one-free deal for enterprise customers, and lured some companies with as much as 50 percent off the tablet. So far, none of these tactics have worked well enough to rid RIM of the PlayBook.
Despite the massive price cut, it’s debatable whether or not buying a PlayBook now is a wise move. Even before RIM completely abandoned its tablet ambitions, the PlayBook was a neglected member of the BlackBerry family. The tablet still lacks a native email client and BlackBerry Messenger support. The update that will deliver these must-have upgrades has been delayed again and again, with its release date now pushed to February. And now, with RIM clearly trying to wash the taste of PlayBook out of its dry mouth, the chance for regular updates and quality support are less than abysmal.
That said, $300 for a 64GB tablet is a steal, no matter how you slice it. Obviously, that model will sell out first (if any sell out at all, that is), since there is no reason to buy the 16 or 32GB models until the 64GB is no longer available. The sale will last until February 4.