Bloomberg is reporting that RIM’s Co-CEO, Jim Balsillie, indicated his company’s Playbook tablet would be available in North American markets in Q1 of 2011 for under $500. The $500 price point is notable for the industry as it is where Apple’s 16GB Wi-Fi iPad currently sits. The report also noted that “RIM may sell the Playbook through retail stores of Target Corp. and Best Buy Co.” and that the device would be available globally in Q2 of 2011. There you have it, a sub-$500, BlackBerry tablet waiting in the wings. Who’s excited? More →
RIM's Balsillie responds to Jobs, 'customers are getting tired of being told what to think by Apple'
For those of you not following the Apple earnings-call soap opera, let us give you a brief recap. Yesterday, during the Cupertino company’s Q4 conference call, CEO Steve Jobs joined the broadcast to speak with investors — an uncommon but not unprecedented move. Jobs then began to take questions and throw verbal jabs at several industry players including Google, application maker TweetDeck, HTC, Motorola, and Research In Motion.
Google’s Andy Rubin responded to Jobs’ claim that Android’s “openness” was slang for “fragmented” with a comical tweet, as did TweetDeck founder Iain Dodsworth; Jobs insinuated that developing TweetDeck for Android was a “nightmare” due to the platform’s fragmentation. Motorola and HTC, who Jobs called out for “skinning” Android, have — up to this point — kept quiet. Who’s left? Research In Motion.
Mr. Jobs noted that Apple sold 14.1 million iPhones in its Q4 which was far more than RIM’s latest quarterly blowout of 12 million handsets. Having a flare for the dramatic, and — especially lately — not wanting to take any slack from Apple, RIM co-CEO Jim Balsillie released a statement in response to Jobs’ innuendoes. Some key takeaways from Mr. Balsillie’s publishing: there are people who live both inside and outside of “Apple’s distortion field,” people care about Adobe’s Flash, and 7-inch tablets are cool. Hit the jump to see the full rant-rebuttal from RIM’s Jim Balsillie. More →