Research in Motion has denied it plans to discontinue its tablet PC, the BlackBerry PlayBook.

The web became awash with rumours this week that the tech giant planed to follow in the footsteps of HP and dump its tablet PC after an analyst said RIM had halted production of the device.

"We believe RIM has stopped production of its PlayBook and is actively considering exiting the tablet market," said John Vihn, a semiconductor analyst at Collins Stewart.

"Additionally, our due diligence indicates that RIM has cancelled development of additional tablet projects," he added.

In August, HP announced it was discontinuing the HP TouchPad and removing support for the WebOS platform as it had "not met internal milestones and financial targets".

However, Marisa Conway from RIM told Reuters: "Rumours suggesting that the BlackBerry PlayBook is being discontinued are pure fiction".

"RIM remains highly committed to the tablet market and the future of QNX [the OS used on the PlayBook] in its platform."

Despite having shipped a total of 7000,000 PlayBook's in the first two quarters of this year, the tablet PC has failed to rival the popularity of Apple's iPad.

The 7in BlackBerry PlayBook is powered by a 1GHz dual core-processor and features a WSVGA capacitive touchscreen with a resolution of 1024x600.

The tablet PC, which comes with either 16GB, 32GB or 64GB of storage, benefits from 1GB of RAM and, as with most tablets, has a GPS accelerometer, a six-axis motion sensor and a digital compass. It also features 5Mp main camera, 3Mp secondary camera and an HDMI-out port.