RIM Recalls 1,000 BlackBerry PlayBooks

Research In Motion quietly recalled “approximately” 1,000 BlackBerry PlayBooks on Saturday. The company said that the devices had an operating systems defect that might cause them to be unable to properly load software during initial set up of the devices. The company also said that this particular batch of PlayBooks were shipped to Staples, a U.S. office supply chain, and that most of the units were still in the distribution channel.

“RIM determined that approximately one thousand BlackBerry PlayBook tablets (16 GB) were shipped with an OS build that may result in the devices being unable to properly load software upon initial set-up,” the company said in a statement. “RIM is working to replace the affected devices.”

The BlackBerry maker also said that customers can contact the firm if they are experiencing this trouble on their devices.

Recalling one thousand devices isn’t going to represent too much of a financial hit on the company, but there is little doubt that it will be seen as yet another tablet stumble for the company as it tries to react to Apple’s iPad phenomenon. The device, which was launched in April, has taken hits for not offering a standalone email app, and for not having many third party apps, either.

In fact, Avian Securities analyst Matthew Thornton said just that, telling Reuters that, “It probably doesn’t move the needle financially but it’s just another blemish from an execution standpoint.”

BlackBerry fan site CrackBerry was quick to dismiss the recall, however, saying, “So that’s that. Not a big deal. Nothing to really be worried about in the grand scheme of things and not many consumers should actually be affected by the issue.”

CrackBerry may have the better interpretation, however, at least judging by Wall Street’s reaction. Shares in Research In Motion dipped to a two-year low in the early hours of Monday’s trading session, but the stock had regained most of those by the mid-afternoon. As of this writing, RIMM was trading at US$43.16 per share, down 0.08 (-0.19%), on moderate volume.