Playbook launch day sales may be as high as 50,000

Posted by Mark Raby

Projections show good news for the Blackberry tablet.

Research in Motion needs the Playbook to bring the entire company back to relevance in this ever-changing mobile market, and RBC Capital Markets says it may be well on its way.

The financial firm expects that as many as 50,000 Playbook units were purchased from retail stores within the device's first day on the market, when combined with pre-order numbers.

Moreover, it said of the major store locations is contacted, one in nine said they sold out within 24 hours.

The Playbook does still have an uphill battle, as it debuted to lukewarm reviews at best, many of which attacked its lack of native calendar, contact, or note-taking apps.

Meanwhile, the most important feature of the device - the ability to connect in real-time with a paired Blackberry phone - doesn't even work with AT&T, one of the strongest Blackberry partners.

Also at issue is the number of apps available, which may be the biggest hurdle for RIM. While a couple thousand apps are already available from the device's App World marketplace, most are largely unknown and do not include the most popular apps available on the iPhone and Android Market.

Nevertheless, these early sales numbers show momentum for RIM that the company hasn't seen in years, so even though it's still struggling, at least it finally managed to strike a chord with some consumers.