PlayBook executive leaves BlackBerry


BlackBerry is losing another senior executive. According to The Wall Street Journal, David J. Smith, Executive Vice President for Enterprise Mobile Computing, has resigned with the move taking place “within the past few weeks.” Smith led the team that was responsible for the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet, assuming the role a few months after its 2011 launch.

Missing a number of key features at launch, the BlackBerry PlayBook stumbled right out of the gate and was never  to recover to establish itself as a credible competitor on the tablet market. Poor sales, despite price cuts, forced Research In Motion to take a US$500 million write-down in unsold PlayBook inventory in late 2011. BlackBerry CEO Thorsten Heins effectively sealed the PlayBook’s fate earlier this year when he announced that, despite earlier promises, the company would not upgrade the PlayBook to BlackBerry 10.

A BlackBerry spokesman confirmed Smith’s upcoming departure, adding that it was done for “personal reasons.” Smith remains with the company for now and is “working with BlackBerry through a proper transition.”

The move follows the firing of BlackBerry’s U.S. head of sales and the departure of two other senior executives.  More executive departures are expected as incentive packages expire and targets for various company objectives such as sales and subscriber growth are raised by Heins in a bid to turn the company’s fortunes around.

Source : The Wall Street Journal