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NEW YORK (

TheStreet

) --

Research In Motion's

(RIMM)

PlayBook tablet received its first round of reviews, and the verdict isn't very encouraging for the company's breakthrough new product.

The long-awaited PlayBook -- RIM's answer to the popular

Apple

(AAPL) - Get Apple Inc. (AAPL) Report

iPad -- was greeted with reviews Thursday that suggest the BlackBerry tablet has arrived not fully baked.

This is not the debut RIM was hoping for. Last month, during the company

earnings conference call

, RIM executives told analysts that "Playbook will have a highly successful launch."

The thing is, RIM needs huge PlayBook sales to offset its stale lineup of phones and fill in the sales void until the arrival of a new generation of BlackBerries, which is about a year away.

PlayBook reviewers found a few things to like, but most concluded that the tablet came up short in several key areas.

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The lack of a 3G or 4G wireless capability and the

reliance on a bridge to BlackBerry

phones for cellular connections and functions like email irked

The Wall Street Journal's

Walt Mossberg.

A

dearth of applications

annoyed

The New York Times'

David Pogue.

And perhaps summing up the chorus of complaints that found the PlayBook incomplete,

Gizmodo's

Matt Buchanan

writes:

"There's a whole lot of stuff that's still not there."

Investors sort of got the same sense about RIM, sending the shares down 1% to $54.25 early Thursday.

--Written by Scott Moritz in New York.>To contact this writer, click here: Scott Moritz, or email: scott.moritz@thestreet.com.To follow Scott on Twitter, go to http://twitter.com/MoritzDispatch.>To send a tip, email: tips@thestreet.com.