Lackluster PlayBook Sales Force Layoffs at Quanta

Published on September 21, 2011
by John Paczkowski

A precipitous drop in shipments of Research In Motion’s PlayBook has forced the company to ramp down production of the tablet — with disastrous results for its manufacturing partner Quanta.

Industry sources say Quanta has sacked more than 1,000 employees at a plant in northern Taiwan, slashing the PlayBook’s production line to “a few hundred” from about 1,900. Though Quanta declined to specify the reasons for the cuts, beyond attributing them to a “specific product,” they are believed to be the result of what DigiTimes describes as “drastically shrinking” orders for the PlayBook.

Which seems entirely plausible. RIM shipped just 200,000 PlayBooks in the second quarter, far below what most analysts had been expecting, and down from about 500,000 last quarter, when it first began selling the device.

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