“Still pulling for RIM, but man, these were disheartening remarks” said the Financial Post’s Matt Hartley on Twitter.
“RIP RIM” remarked another Twitter user.
Shares of Research in Motion were down 7% in after hours trading today after the company’s Q3 conference call. It wasn’t today’s numbers; Q3 revenue of $5.2 billion was up 24% from last quarter and BlackBerry smartphone shipments of 14.1 million were up 33% from Q2. It was the future, which many believe looks increasingly bleak for the Waterloo-based mobile giant.
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RIM warned it has a tough Q4 to slog through, where it expects smartphone shipments will be between 11 million and 12 million units. The company is in a transition phase between its BlackBerry 7 platform and its highly touted new QNX-based platform, BlackBerry 10.
Many analysts expected an early 2012 launch of the new BlackBerry 10 phones, but on the conference call Lazardis revealed the phones won’t be available until “the latter half of 2012”. The RIM co-CEO said the delay is because of a dual-core processing chip that will not be available until that time.
In the press release announcing the results RIM characterized the time between platforms as one that will be difficult, but is necessary for the company to be competitive in the future.
“It may take some time to realize the benefits of these efforts and the platform transition that we are undertaking” read the note, “but we continue to believe that RIM has the right set of strengths and capabilities to maintain a leading role in the mobile communications industry.”
On the conference the co-CEO’s, who announced they would each be taking a pay cut to just a single dollar a year, effective immediately, were contrite. Jim Balsillie said “The last few quarters have been some of the most trying in the recent history of the company,” while
Lazaridis, who was the one to break the news on QNX looked for something that seems to be in short supply for RIM these days. “We ask for your patience and confidence,” he said.