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We're not killing the PlayBook, says RIM

BlackBerry maker RIM has denied allegations that it plans to stop making its PlayBook tablet, though prices have been slashed.

BlackBerry maker RIM has struck back at rumours that the PlayBook tablet is about to be killed, decrying such whispers as "pure fiction".

"Rumours suggesting that the BlackBerry PlayBook is being discontinued are pure fiction," RIM's Marisa Conway told Reuters.

"RIM remains highly committed to the tablet market and the future of QNX in its platform."

Last night we reported on analyst claims that RIM would be humanely destroying the PlayBook, and that it could even be backing out of the tablet market altogether.

Nevertheless, the price of the PlayBook in the US has been slashed by $200 at Best Buy, putting the cheapest model at $299, or about £190 in patriotic pounds sterling.

That's cheap as chips, and signals to us that the PlayBook could be going the way of HP's TouchPad, which had its price dropped to a mere £90 after HP abandoned the webOS operating system.

It's no secret that the PlayBook is struggling -- we've heard RIM isn't making any money from the tablet, after deciding to give the first 500,000 units to shops at a discount price to encourage early buyers. That first batch allegedly didn't sell. Ah well, it probably seemed like a great idea at the time.

Why is the PlayBook failing to win people over? Well, the fact that it's total pants doesn't help, but with Apple's iPad owning nearly 75 per cent of the tablet market, it's incredibly tough for outsiders to succeed.

We reckon that even if the PlayBook kicks the bucket, the QNX-based 'BlackBerry OS' that powers it will live on -- we've heard that RIM is planning on constructing a 'superphone' that uses the platform.

Would you shed a tear if the PlayBook shuffled off this mortal coil? Or would you dance on its grave like a maniac, holding your iPad aloft and hollering at the sun god? Unleash your opinions in the comments section below, or on our Facebook wall.