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Should BlackBerry make a new tablet?

After the launch of the Z10 smartphone, speculation turns to whether BlackBerry should offer a follow-up to its PlayBook slate, despite lackluster sales.
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Written by Sean Portnoy, Contributor on

As BlackBerry fights for its life with its new Z10 smartphone, some have turned their attention to whether or not the company should re-enter the tablet market after its PlayBook didn't set the world on fire. That speculation was fueled from comments by Blackberry exec David J Smith, who told The Wall Street Journal earlier this week that a new BlackBerry tablet was under consideration.

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Image: BlackBerry

Smith said the company is still "very interested" in the tablet space and feels there is room for "a range of different products", while acknowledging that it is a "challenging market". BlackBerry has learned that the hard way, when the PlayBook was greeted with a collective "meh" by the buying public, even after numerous price cuts.

Of course, the firm has developed the new BlackBerry 10 OS, so it's only natural that it should think about rolling out new devices that make the most of it. And while Apple has sold millions upon millions of iPads, and Amazon and Samsung have sold millions of Android-based tablets, there's still plenty of jostling left for control of the enterprise market, where the BlackBerry was king not so long ago. (In fact, the question of whether BlackBerry 10 could revitalize enterprise interest was the subject of our recent great debate.)

The tablet market is so enticing that HP has even rejoined the fray, though it's starting out with an Android model that taps into thousands and thousands of apps. With its own ecosystem, BlackBerry will have a tougher sell, and frankly it would need to unleash something completely innovative and/or dirt cheap to get sales and not just internet buzz.

Is the risk worth it for the teetering BlackBerry to offer a PlayBook successor? What would it take for you to buy a new BlackBerry tablet? Let us know in the Talkback section below.

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