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RIM beats estimates in Q3, but subscriber base shrinks

RIM Earnings Q3 2013

Research In Motion (RIMM) on Thursday posted its financial results for its fiscal third quarter, which ended on December 1st. Investor sentiment has been mixed leading up to the struggling vendor’s third-quarter report, with some analysts insisting there was still money to be made ahead of RIM’s BlackBerry 10 launch and others already counting the days until the company buckles. Wall Street’s consensus for fiscal Q3 2013 saw RIM posting a loss of $0.35 per share on $2.65 billion in revenue and RIM beat expectations on Thursday, recording a net loss of $114 million, or $0.22 per share, on $2.7 billion in sales. This marks RIM’s fourth consecutive quarterly loss as the company pins its hopes on BlackBerry 10, which will be unveiled during a press conference on January 30th.

As far as product shipments go, RIM shipped 6.9 million BlackBerry smartphones on the quarter and just over 250,000 BlackBerry Playbook tablets. The 6.9 million smartphone shipments represent an 51% year-over-year drop from the third quarter of 2011. Even more ominously for RIM, its subscriber base shrunk by 1 million users over the quarter, as the company now counts 79 million total subscribers.

Despite these negatives, investors reacted positively to the better-than-expected earnings report, with shares climbing by more than 7% to the $15 range in after hours trading.

Prior to joining BGR as News Editor, Brad Reed spent five years covering the wireless industry for Network World. His first smartphone was a BlackBerry but he has since become a loyal Android user.