When BlackBerry announced that its first BlackBerry 10 smartphone would be a high-end full touch device, industry watchers cried that the company’s savior would be the keyboard-equipped BlackBerry Q10 and it should have debuted first. According to a new report from The Wall Street Journal, however, launching the Q10 first might not have made any difference. The paper spoke with various executives at wireless carriers and cell phone retailers across the United States and Canada, and it came away stating that sales of BlackBerry’s Q10 smartphone have been “dismal.” More →
BlackBerry lost $84 million and 4 million subscribers during the May quarter despite the launch of the highly anticipated BlackBerry Q10 smartphone. The Q10 was BlackBerry’s first BlackBerry 10 phone equipped with a full QWERTY keyboard and industry watchers were expecting pent-up demand among BlackBerry loyalists and enterprise users to give the vendor a boost. The company’s struggles continued, however, and it has since announced that it is exploring a sale and other options to reverse course. In the meantime, additional carrier support is never a bad thing and Sprint on Monday announced the upcoming launch of BlackBerry’s flagship Q10 smartphone. Sprint’s version of the phone will become available this coming Friday, August 30th, and it will cost $199.99 on contract. The carrier’s full press release follows below. More →
BlackBerry posted fiscal first quarter results that missed analysts’ estimates by a wide margin. The company’s surprise loss was obviously troubling, but even more so was the fact that BlackBerry 10 device shipments came in at 2.7 million units, missing consensus figures by a wide margin despite the fact that this was the Z10’s first full quarter of sales and the quarter in which the Q10 launched. Following the company’s results, Jefferies & Co. analyst Peter Misek is now reporting that BlackBerry has slashed combined Z10 and Q10 orders to 1 million units per month, a 50% cut from the 2 million units BlackBerry had on order each month. In a note picked up by Barron’s, Misek says he’s not surprised by the cut at all, but rather is surprised that BlackBerry had previously “raised build plans at the end of May despite the worsening sell-through in the back of the month.” Misek still has a Buy rating on BlackBerry shares with an $18 price target.
Good news for AT&T subscribers who missed having full QWERTY keyboards: You’ll be able to buy the BlackBerry Q10 from your carrier on June 21st for $199.99 with a two-year service agreement. AT&T also says that “consumers who trade in their current smartphone to AT&T will be eligible to receive at least $100 off the purchase of a new smartphone, including the BlackBerry Q10.” The Q10, which is designed to look more like iconic pre-touch screen BlackBerry phones, includes 3.5-inch touch display, a 1.5GHz dual-core processor, an 8-megapixel rear-facing camera, a 2-megapixel front-facing camera, 2GB RAM, 16GB internal storage and a 2,100 mAh battery. Although the device didn’t launch with the same initial fanfare as the touch screen-only BlackBerry Z10, it’s quickly become a key product for BlackBerry customers who crave the device’s easy-to-use keyboard.
Shares of BlackBerry received another small boost on Friday following an upbeat report about the company’s latest smartphone. Maynard Um of Walls Fargo, per AllThingsD, claims that sales of the BlackBerry Q10 are better than expected and could help the company beat Wall Street’s expectations for the fiscal first quarter. The analyst noted that “channel checks” reveal that the Q10 is off to a good start in the United States and is already outpacing the BlackBerry Z10’s launch. He cites the 76 million worldwide loyal BlackBerry users as the key demographic for the smartphone, adding that it “presents a strong upgrade opportunity.” Societe Generale analyst Andy Perkins issued a similar note on Thursday, suggesting sales of the BlackBerry’s new smartphones were higher than expected. The analyst upgraded BlackBerry from a “Sell” rating to a “Buy” with a target price of $17 per share.
Shares of BlackBerry rallied on Thursday on reports that the company’s new smartphones are selling better than expected. Andy Perkins of Societe Generale said, per Barron’s, that his “checks” revealed that the BlackBerry Z10 and BlackBerry Q10 sold better in the fiscal Q2 than Wall Street expected. The analyst estimates that BlackBerry will pull in $3.7 billion in sales with a profit of $0.06 per share, up from earlier estimates of $2.7 billion. Perkins forecasts that the Z10 sold more than 4 million units, however Q10 sales aren’t expected to be as high. He explained that despite positive reception, the Q10’s limited availability and recent release means sales were likely closer to a million units, which would give BlackBerry a grand total of more than 5 million BlackBerry 10 devices sold in the past quarter. The analyst upgraded BlackBerry from a “Sell” rating to a “Buy” with a target price of $17 per share, up from $13. BlackBerry’s stock closed 6.49% higher at $14.44 per share.
BlackBerry is expecting big things from its QWERTY-equipped BlackBerry Q10 smartphone. Not everyone is optimistic about the handset’s future, however. Strategy Analytics analyst Neil Shah noted that the Q10 brings fragmentation to the BlackBerry platform “in terms of applications development and availability of apps across different form-factors.” The analyst explained that developers are forced to “specially tweak” their BlackBerry 10 apps that were originally designed for the Z10 to be compatible with the Q10’s 3.1-inch, 720 x 720-pixel display. More →
BlackBerry watched as its once dominant enterprise business lost share to the likes of Samsung and Apple over the past few years. The company is now looking to win over new and old business customers alike with its line of BlackBerry 10 smartphones. The BlackBerry Q10 will be the company’s first smartphone to debut on all four major U.S. carriers. The handset features BlackBerry’s signature QWERTY keyboard and is expected to sell better than the all-touch BlackBerry Z10. The company is betting big on the Q10 and recently revealed that 60% of U.S. Fortune 500 companies are currently testing or are already using its new products. More →
Pretty much on the same day as Digitimes reported that BlackBerry boosting its component orders, a directly opposite message was sent by Pacific Crest’s James Faucette. He sees an enormous gap between production and demand; combined sell-through of well below 500,000 Z10 and Q10 models with production remaining above 1.5 million units per month. If true, this would be one of the most massive discrepancies between demand and supply for a smartphone platform in recent years. More →
Verizon will release its second BlackBerry 10 smartphone next week. Not to be outdone by T-Mobile, which also announced a launch date for the Q10 this week, Verizon on Thursday opened preorders for the new QWERTY-equipped BlackBerry smartphone. In addition to BlackBerry’s signature keyboard, the handset features a 3.1-inch Super AMOLED 720 x 720 pixel resolution display, a 1.5GHz dual-core Snapdragon S4 processor and an 8-megapixel rear camera. The smartphone also includes 2GB RAM, 16GB of internal storage, NFC, a microSD slot and a 2,100 mAh battery. BGR recently reviewed the Q10 and found it to be a decent option for those users who still require a full physical keyboard. The BlackBerry Q10 will be available from Verizon on June 6th for $199 with a new two-year agreement.
There has been a lot of speculation about the success of BlackBerry’s new BlackBerry 10 smartphones. Using a wide variety of methods, some analysts have claimed that sales of the new smartphones are going strong, while others say they are fairly weak. One thing that’s clear, though, is that BlackBerry’s newest devices seem to be hits in France. According to French wireless provider SFR, the BlackBerry Q10 is the best selling smartphone on its network. The handset is outselling the Galaxy S4, HTC One, Lumia 520 and even the iPhone 5. Furthermore, the BlackBerry Z10 is also outselling the iPhone 5, Sony Xperia Z and Galaxy S III. SFR has more than 21 million subscribers and is the second largest wireless provider in France. If similar trends are occurring on other networks, BlackBerry may finally have its first hit in quite some time.
T-Mobile finally began carrying Apple’s iPhone lineup last month after more than five years of waiting, but the nation’s No.4 carrier is hardly done building out its smartphone lineup. According to TmoNews, T-Mobile plans to launch two more leading smartphones next week. First up is the HTC One, which BGR recently reviewed and called the closest thing the world has ever seen to a no-compromise smartphone. BlackBerry’s first next-generation QWERTY phone, the BlackBerry Q10, is also said to be launching next week. Both phones will reportedly debut on June 5th and the Q10 is expected to cost $99.99 up front followed by 24 monthly payments of $20. Pricing for the HTC One is unknown for the time being, but it should be in line with other flagship phones offered by T-Mobile. More →
On the global stage, BlackBerry is still hurting — for the first time ever, Microsoft’s Windows Phone market share topped BlackBerry in the first quarter this year to take the No.3 spot in the smartphone platform war. We’re still very early on in BlackBerry’s comeback attempt though, and progress is being made in some key markets. Raymond James analyst Tavis McCourt points to BlackBerry’s home turf in Canada as one of the markets where the vendor has seen good early response to its new BlackBerry Z10 and Q10 smartphones, and BlackBerry’s progress thus far has been impressive according to his figures. More →