The BlackBerry story is far from over and regardless of whether or not the Fairfax buyout happens, the company will live on in one form or another. BlackBerry as we know it today will almost certainly soon be dead, however, and the company’s handset business may indeed be among the casualties. Barclays analyst Ben Reitzes issued a note to investors on Tuesday night discussing the U.S. smartphone market along with the early smartphone upgrade plans and trade-in programs that are now proliferating. Also buried in his research, however, was a note about BlackBerry.
“We believe that Apple and Samsung are seeing some support from the demise of Blackberry and transitions at Nokia, which could be fuelling [sic] some new unit sales into other high-end smartphone brands,” Reitzes wrote in the note, which was picked by by Barron’s.
The analyst continued, “We believe Apple and Samsung can also see a buffer from the cannibalization of BlackBerry’s installed base, which Gartner estimates could be about 90 million this year. We believe Blackberry corporate customers in developed markets are more likely to accelerate migration to BYO strategies and/or transition to alternative vendors. We estimate the size of the entire install base could allow for about a 5-10 point shift in market share towards both Apple and Samsung over the next few years.”
Recent research from National Bank Financial analyst Kris Thompson suggested BlackBerry’s global smartphone subscriber base could fall to zero over the next few years, so an upside for market leaders Apple and Samsung certainly would be likely in that scenario.