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RIM To Delay PlayBook Update Until 2012

There’s bad news for Blackberry Playbook users expecting email and BBM this month – Research In Motion has announced that their beleaguered PlayBook will not get this months expected software update – and users shouldn’t expect it until sometime in 2012.

The update had been expected to land this month, but Research In Motion said doesn’t expect to release it until next year, with February being tipped as a new date.

The Playbook has been a sales disaster for RIM, with one of the major downsides to the tablet was the lack of Blackberry email or BBM.

RIM has admitted that the sales of the device have been lower that they had hoped for and acknowledged customers want native email, calendar and contact applications.

The new update was meant to address these glaring omissions, but it has been kicked into touch until sometime next year.

In a statement released on the company blog they described the descision as a “difficult” one, but promise the revision would mean all the firm’s phones and Playbooks would “work together even better.”

As expected the markets didn’t take the news too well and the Canadian firms’ stock was trading down a whopping 7.5% after the news.

At the moment users who bought the Playbook cannot access their Blackberry email through their Playbooks unless their devices are bridged using a special software bridge.

To make the situation a little worse the company also said it had taken the decision to delay the inclusion of a BBM instant messaging application to a later date too. Could this be the final nail in coffin for Blackberry and its Playbook?

However, RIM said it was still planning to offer businesses the ability to manage their employees’ tablets from a centralised computer server and to offer workers custom-built applications through the Blackberry App World store in its OS 2.0 download.

Analysts said the news may prove damaging to sales over the holiday season.

It is a big setback for them. When they launched the tablet they tried to walk the line between a consumer device and an enterprise device,” said Jon Erensen, research director at the technology specialists Gartner.

People were hoping the initial limitations would be corrected with the update by now. The delay means they fall even further behind.”

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