With the $500 BlackBerry PlayBook selling for as little as $199 to everyday consumers, and the launch of similarly priced devices like the Kindle Fire and Kobo Vox, it’s unlikely that anyone will pay “full price” for a RIM tablet again.
But $199 isn’t even the cheapest one can snag the tablet for, believe it or not. Employees of RIM—of which there are roughly 17,000—can purchase PlayBooks for as little as $99 apiece. According to inside sources cited in CrackBerry and The Verge, employees can buy the 16 GB model for $99, the 32 GB (with an HDMI cable) for $149, and the 64 GB model (with an HDMI cable and case) for $199.
There is a limit, but it’s on the high end at either 5 or 8 units per employee. That could equal up to 136,000 devices, or nearly as much as RIM sold in its entire second quarter to the global masses. And with the degree of separation as little as four, most people could theoretically buy the PlayBook for this price.
Retailers offering Cyber Monday deals that price the PlayBook at $199 for the masses include Walmart, Staples, and RIM’s own online store.