Research In Motion (RIM) recently provided an inside look at its BBM Music app on its corporate blog, and while impressive, Digitimes Research believes the app further highlights the issues RIM has balancing its smartphone business with its interest in becoming a player in the tablet market, as highlighted in the recent Digitimes Research Special Report "Expectations for the 2H 2011 tablet market."
According to RIM, BBM Music will be a BBM-connected social music service that allows BlackBerry users to share and discover music through a BBM contact. Customers will be able to build a music profile (from a catalog of millions of tracks), invite BBM contacts to join and then gain access to the music shared on the social network. The app is built using the same BBM SDKs used by the BlackBerry developer community and is expected to be available later this year for a monthly subscription fee of US$4.99.
Digitimes Research believes BBM Music is a brilliant step by RIM to defend its current install base, as its competitors have yet to combine social features with their cloud based music services. However, BBM Music again highlighted the compatibility problem between BlackBerry OS on smartphones and QNX on tablets, and creates no help for its tablet sales this year.
Digitimes Research analyst James Wang estimates RIM will ship two million PlayBook tablets in 2011.
Wang is the author of the Digitimes Research Special Report, "Expectations for the 2H 2011 tablet market."