RIM begins modest BlackBerry PlayBook production

Looks like RIM is playing it cautious with the PlayBook as the company needs the tablet to succeed to stay relevant.  Production of the PlayBook tablet is between 150,000-200,000 a month from Quanta's plant in Taiwan, with shipments ready as early as February.  Sources say that RIM is building the PlayBook exclusively in Taiwan so white-box makers in China won't be able to copy the tablet, while also protecting its security specifications.

As Apple continues to advance into the corporate field where RIM once ruled, the PlayBook could be RIM's rebuttal to the popular iPad. The PlayBook is set for a staggered launch, with the US getting the first shipments followed by an international expansion.

Corporate executives have been longing for a BlackBerry like computer and RIM is hoping the PlayBook is what they've been waiting for.  Quanta stated that it maintains sufficient capacity in Taiwan to meet client needs right now without the majority of its production lines in China.  The low production numbers look to be part of RIM's strategy to see how popular the device is first in the US before full blown production takes place.  The PlayBook currently has a March release date.

[Via VentureBeat]