Research In Motion’s new BlackBerry 7 smartphones are seeing strong initial sales among businesses looking to upgrade from older BlackBerry smartphones, however consumer sales have been weak according to Canaccord Genuity. In a research note, Canaccord analysts Mike Walkley and Matt Ramsay found during channel checks that upgrade sales of BlackBerry 7 devices in North America were quite strong with enterprise customers in August. Specifically, Verizon Wireless saw strong Bold 9930 upgrade sales among its substantial enterprise customer base, while AT&T and Sprint saw mixed sales. T-Mobile’s $300 Bold 9900 has not been selling well according to Canaccord’s checks. Read on for more. More →
Sales of Research In Motion’s new BlackBerry 7 smartphones have been mixed out of the gate according to one analyst, with AT&T showing weak sell-through while Sprint stores have shown healthy sales to end users. In a note to investors on Wednesday, RBC Capital Markets Managing Director Mike Abramsky wrote that the majority of subscribers who purchased BlackBerry 7 smartphones during their first two days of availability were upgrading from older BlackBerry models rather than switching from other platforms. Checks performed by RBC at 40 retail stores found that the sales of the AT&T’s BlackBerry Torch 9810 were light while the Bold 9930 sold well at Sprint, with the phone having been sold out at 20% of the stores contacted. Initial inventory at each of the 40 stores is unknown. Abramsky also commented on U.S. carrier support, noting that AT&T and Sprint appear more supportive with aggressive pricing of RIM’s new devices, while Verizon and T-Mobile’s less competitive pricing might have a negative impact on sales. Read on for more. More →
Sprint on Monday announced that it will launch Research In Motion’s latest CDMA smartphones — the BlackBerry Bold 9930 and the BlackBerry Torch 9850 — on Sunday, August 21st. In line with BGR’s exclusive report from earlier this month, Sprint will offer the Bold 9930 for $249.99 on contract and the Torch 9850 will cost $149.99 on contract after a $50 mail-in rebate. The Bold 9930 is RIM’s brand new touch-and-type flagship smartphone, which launched on rival carrier Verizon Wireless this morning at the same $250 price point. The Torch 9850 is an affordable full touchscreen smartphone that picks up where RIM’s Storm lineup left off. Both smartphones feature Research In Motion’s latest BlackBerry 7 OS and are part of the largest global launch in RIM’s storied history. Sprint’s full press release follows below. More →
Verizon Wireless is now offering RIM’s highly anticipated BlackBerry Bold 9930 smartphone for $249.99 on contract. BGR exclusively reported last week that Sprint would soon be selling the new touch-and-type Bold for $249.99, and at that time we indicated that other U.S. carriers would likely launch the device at the same price point. Verizon Wireless is now the first carrier to do so, and while early adopters are sure to snatch up the long-awaiting 9900/9930 despite its $250 price tag, widespread adoption may be hindered until the new smartphone dips to $199.99 on contract. We reviewed the new BlackBerry Bold last week and found that the hardware is absolutely worth carriers’ high cost of entry. We also found that RIM’s BlackBerry 7 software, despite improved performance and fluidity, left much to be desired.
UPDATE: Verizon Wireless’ full press release now follows below. More →
Is RIM’s BlackBerry Bold 9930 worthy of a $250 price tag? Sprint seems to think so. BGR has obtained a copy of an upcoming Sprint flier that reveals pricing for several devices, including RIM’s new flagship CDMA smartphone, the BlackBerry Bold 9930. According to the document, Sprint’s BlackBerry Bold 9930 will cost $249.99 with a new 2-year agreement. Sprint’s upcoming BlackBerry Torch 9850 will cost $149.99 on contract, and the Samsung Conquer 4G will cost $99.99, as we knew. The $249.99 price tag on the new Bold at Sprint could also mean we can expect similar pricing from other major carriers. We really like the aggressive Torch 9850 pricing — $150 is a terrific starting point for RIM’s new full touchscreen device, and when it drops to $99.99 later this, it will be a steal. $250 is still a tough pill to swallow, however, and we think the above-average cost could slow adoption of the Bold fairly significantly. Early adopters will be on board regardless, of course, but average consumers and businesses — especially SMBs — might think twice before parting with $250 for the 9930. Do we think RIM’s new touch-and-type Bold is worth $250? We’ll that’s an entirely different story, and you’ll have to wait for our full review to find out. An image of the full page from Sprint’s flier follows below. More →
Hello, my name is Jonathan, and I was a BlackBerry addict. Forget having every BlackBerry the company released, including different variants of models that didn’t ever appear in the U.S., like the BlackBerry 8707g. Forget being one of the first people to discover BlackBerry Messenger and convert family and friends to the service, even though it was probably the slowest thing ever to run on a BlackBerry 7290. Forget getting a bunch of celebrities to attend the BlackBerry 8700 launch party in New York City just so I would be one of the first people outside of RIM to have an 8700. I even once paid to have a BlackBerry 8700 forged out of solid white gold, which barely functioned since gold doesn’t play nice with antenna (an early lesson on wireless communications — maybe the first real antennagate?). I had a dedicated BlackBerry Enterprise Server for over four years — I was so in. Read on for more. More →
AT&T isn’t the only major U.S. carrier getting in on the action today. Sprint on Wednesday confirmed that it too will soon launch a pair of Research In Motion’s latest smartphones. The touch-and-type BlackBerry Bold 9930 and the full touchscreen BlackBerry Torch 9850 will both become available to Sprint subscribers later this fall. Sprint neglected to specify a launch date or pricing, but we likely won’t have long to wait until these sleek new BlackBerry 7 phones find their way to store shelves. “Sprint’s incredibly loyal BlackBerry customers will appreciate the benefits of the BlackBerry 7 user experience on these two new smartphones – BlackBerry Bold 9930 and BlackBerry Torch 9850,” said Sprint’s product boss Fared Adib in a statement. “BlackBerry 7 is an evolution that extends the ability to support our customers domestically and internationally as they juggle their busy personal and professional lives with one easy-to-use device. We are excited to continue our strong relationship with RIM through these new powerful devices.” Sprint’s full press release follows below. More →
Ahead of an official announcement expected on Tuesday, Verizon Wireless let slip a promotional video starring its upcoming flagship BlackBerry smartphone, the BlackBerry Bold 9930. First revealed exclusively here on BGR, this next-generation Bold smartphone is the handset BlackBerry fans have been clamoring for. It features a sharp 2.8-inch touchscreen above the famous full QWERTY that RIM’s phones are known for. While the Torch was the first BlackBerry device to pair a touchscreen and a full QWERTY, the keyboard was no match for the one found on RIM’s Curve and Bold smartphones. Thankfully, the 9930 sports the best of both worlds and although we’re far more interested in seeing what QNX-powered devices RIM has in the works, the Bold 9930 will certainly help tide over legions of BlackBerry fans while they await RIM’s next bushel of Berries. An official Verizon Wireless video showing off the new Bold 9930 follows below. More →
BlackBerry fans will just have to keep waiting for the company’s latest and greatest handset. We have confirmed with multiple sources that the BlackBerry Bold 9900 won’t be launching until September globally. While an announcement at BlackBerry World was inevitable, it still hurts to see RIM struggle to get devices out the door swiftly. RIM announced that the BlackBerry Bold 9900 would be available in the “summer” from carrier’s globally when the product was unveiled at BlackBerry World.
P.S. We have heard RIM might have one more major OS release in the cards, possibly BlackBerry OS 7.5, before the launch of QNX on smartphones.
RBC Capital Markets Managing Director Mike Abramsky believes RIM has sold approximately 250,000 BlackBerry PlayBook tablets to date. In a note to investors on Wednesday, the analyst points to channel checks in stating PlayBook sales have remained steady since the device’s launch on April 19th. If these estimates are accurate, RIM’s PlayBook is handily outselling the XOOM , Motorola’s flagship Honeycomb tablet, which sold 250,000 units in its first two months of availability. Abramsky believes RIM could move 500,000 units during RIM’s fiscal first quarter, though we would note that RIM’s current pace is way off RBC’s initial projections of 4 million units in 2011 and 6 million units total in the PlayBook’s first 12 months of availability. RBC later lowered its projections down to 3 million units in 2011 but at the current pace of 250,000 units per month, RIM is on track to sell just over 2 million units this year. Abramsky also notes that BlackBerry smartphone sales are slowing according to checks, and he now projects shipments to decline 9% from last quarter to 13.5 million units, which is in line with guidance. More →
We’re here in Orlando at RIM’s BlackBerry World developer event and have scored some more hands-on time with the recently announced BlackBerry Bold 9900/9930… and we’re pretty impressed with what we see so far. The Bold 9900 felt light in the hand, but definitely had a premium feel thanks to its thin form factor and metal accents around the body — it’s also the thinnest BlackBerry to date. The new BlackBerry 7 operating system was very snappy and we didn’t experience any lag when bouncing around the new OS, likely thanks to the 1.2GHz processor under its hood. The keyboard reminds us a lot of the original BlackBerry Bold 9000, and the form factor is more akin to that phone than the handset it is replacing, the 9700. The industrial design of the phone is solid, but we do wish RIM would venture away from a form factor that’s feeling pretty stale. We’ll need to spend more time with BlackBerry 7, but superficially it looks nearly identical to BlackBerry 6 — which could be a positive or negative depending on your viewpoint. We’re excited to see what RIM does with the built-in NFC technology, and the faster processor should definitely open the flood gates to more robust applications in the future. We’ve assembled a gallery of photos for your scrutiny. Have a look and let us know what you think of RIM’s latest creation.