RIM may write off its inventory, report says

Research In Motion's BlackBerry smartphones and Playbook tablets continue to pile up despite price markdowns, Bloomberg reports.

BlackBerry 10 shown off at BlackBerry World in May. CNET

Research in Motion may need to write off more than $1 billion in inventory, Bloomberg reports, in another sign that the company continues to lose ground to Apple's iPhone and Google's Android operating system.

That staggering inventory value is up from up from $618 million a year earlier, illustrating the difficulties that the company has had in selling its products. At the peak of BlackBerry's popularity, mid-2008, the inventory value was at less than $500 million. Bloomberg says the increase grew at a faster rate than any other company in the industry, raising the chances of the company's third writedown since December.

The analysis comes at a time of transition for RIM. The company is positioning itself to launch its BlackBerry 10 products, which run on its next-generation platform. At the same time, sales of its current line of BlackBerry 7 smartphones continue to struggle with little demand from consumers.

Additionally, RIM, which announced the departure of a senior executive yesterday, plans to lay off 2,000 people, according to recent reports. CNET has contacted RIM for comment and will update this post when we hear back.

Update, 10:51 a.m. PT:A RIM spokesperson declined to comment on the inventory value specifically, but said RIM will provide a business update when it reports results on June 28.

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