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[SitM: some Verizon stores aren’t even displaying Blackberries in their showrooms anymore. You can still buy it, but it’s a backroom item]


As it struggles with the declining popularity of the BlackBerry line of smartphones, Research In Motion said on Monday that it would begin laying off about 2,000 employees, 10.5 percent of its work force, this week.

While the company had previously announced that it planned to cut employees, the number of jobs lost was higher than some analysts expected, perhaps suggesting that the company’s situation was deteriorating more rapidly than earlier thought.


The company’s move into the tablet computer market with the BlackBerry PlayBook this spring has also proved disappointing. The device, which uses the new operating system, was introduced without many major features, including e-mail software, a puzzling omission given that BlackBerry phones were the world’s first successful wireless e-mail devices.


RIM has shipped only 500,000 PlayBooks but has not disclosed how many of them have been purchased by consumers and businesses. By comparison, Apple said last week that it sold 9.25 million iPad 2 devices during its last quarter.
RIM’s situation has led several employees to leave the company of their own accord. Brian Wallace, the former vice president of digital marketing and media, recently joined Samsung Mobile. Shortly afterward, he was followed to Samsung by Ryan Bidan, a former Microsoft Games executive who was the senior product manager for the PlayBook.

About the Author

stainless St(br)ainless is one of the founders of Soul in the Machine. His duties include, but are not limited to, sweeping the floors, scrubbing the toilets and taking out the garbage.

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