RIM has announced one of its worst financial showings in years, propped up by respectable sales of its BlackBerry PlayBook tablet.

The Canadian smartphone giant took in a $4.9 billion (£3.03 billion) in revenue, which is up 16 per cent from the corresponding quarter of last year.

Profits for the quarter were posted at $695 million (£430 million), which are slightly down on last year's sum of $769 million (£475 million) and below the company's expectations.

The figures, which also saw RIM sell 13.2m BlackBerrys during the period, offer a bleak outlook for the company, which it says will cost jobs.

PlayBook boost

However, in cheerier news, RIM is claiming that it has shipped 500,000 BlackBerry PlayBook's since its release less than two months ago.

The device officially went on sale in the UK on Thursday, although suffered the launch day indignity of being dropped by O2 due to end-to-end user issues.

Many prospective users have been swayed from diving in due to the lack of a native email client, no BBM, a distinct lack of apps and the absence of the promised-but-not-yet-delivered Android app player.

During the earnings call RIM said that those features will be forthcoming, as well as the 4G version of the PlayBook in the United States.