There are not many alternatives to the Apple iPad in the UK, unless you factor in all the ‘no name’ brands available online and from retail outlets. The Blackberry Playbook was officially announced in the UK yesterday and we decided to walk around a well known high street in the UK to see how the launch was going.
We couldn’t find it anywhere, and we walked into several of the mainstreet phone stores to see if stocks were available. Speaking with one of the o2 sales representatives he said that they had no plans to stock it. Vodafone said the same thing.
We checked online (with our iPad 2) and found that the Carphone Warehouse were listed as an official retailer under the ‘ipads and tablets’ section. 16GB was £399, 32gb was £479 and the 64GB was £559. Finding the nearest store, we posed as a potential customer. The helpful sales guy said they only had a few in stock and that hadn’t sold any yet. I asked if they had an iPad 2 and they said they were sold out. He added that the interest levels in the iPad 2 were incredible and that everytime they had stock available, it was sold out that day.
Checking their website Carphonewarehouse were offering a
‘BlackBerry® Curve 3G Plus BlackBerry® PlayBook™
Free + £37 per month’
seems like a good deal, but the page linking to the offer is broken.
We then tried PCWorld, and the sales representative didn’t even know what the product was. He said they had a few iPad 2’s in stock, as more arrived that morning but no 3G models were available.
Kitguru says: All in all, its a rather feeble launch day for the Playbook and we hope that the promotional campaign improves, because so far we can’t help but feel that the Playbook is destined to be linked to a footnote in the tech history archives.