BlackBerry (BBRY) launched its first BlackBerry 10 smartphone in early February and while there’s no question that the struggling vendor managed a major coup, industry watchers are still mixed as far as overall sales estimates go. Some bears suggest fiscal fourth-quarter BlackBerry Z10 shipments only totalled 300,000 units, but others believe the handset did much better. In fact, Evercore Partners analyst Mark McKechnie raised his shipment estimates for the February quarter in a note sent to clients on Friday.
McKechnie now thinks that BlackBerry shipped 1.2 million BlackBerry Z10 handsets in the fiscal fourth quarter, which ended on March 2nd. The analyst previously believed Z10 shipments would come in at 1 million for the quarter.
BlackBerry’s first BB10 phone has launched in several additional markets since then, including the U.S., and McKechnie thinks shipments will remain stronger than expected. He now sees BlackBerry shipping 3.2 million BB10 smartphones in the May quarter, up from his earlier estimate of 2.6 million units.
Despite the improved outlook at Evercore, BlackBerry shares plummeted more than 7% on Friday as AT&T’s (T) BlackBerry Z10 launch failed to draw a crowd.