It seems as though our "expert" analysts are at it again with their bold predictions regarding BlackBerry's finances. Recently BlackBerry released its much anticipated BlackBerry Z10 device which sports its next generation BlackBerry 10 OS. The devices are progressively launching around the world but have yet to launch in the U.S. The U.S. market has proven to be a strategic market for BlackBerry and is an area in which the company is hoping consumers will embrace its new devices sometime next month.
After a brief period of praise, it seems as though financial analysts are at it again preaching the doom and gloom of the BlackBerry empire. While shares have been consistently up and down over the past few week, analysts are now focusing their attention on total sales.
Canaccord Genuity analyst Michael Walkley who initially estimated that BlackBerry smartphone shipments would be in the one million range has recently downgraded that estimate to a mere 300K units.
In a report Walkley stated that:
“Given our store surveys indicated modest Z10 sales into the channel in the U.K. and Canada, we have reduced our February quarter BB10 smartphone shipment estimates from 1.75M units to 300K units,”
“Further, we believe carrier support for BlackBerry 10 in the U.S. is modest, as demonstrated by Sprint only planning to launch the Q10 and T-Mobile only the Z10. Further, we anticipate carriers will not build large inventory levels for BB10, consistent with prior BB7 high-end launches, and will initially stock modest levels given the weaker consumer demand for high-end BlackBerry smartphones.”
This is contrary to reports that interest in BlackBerry has skyrocketed over 43% in the last 6 months. Currently BlackBerry holds third place in the U.S. market as Windows Phone is slipping. In addition carriers in Canada have temporarily sold out of BlackBerry Z10. Carriers in the UK and UAE have also sold out and have had lines of people outside a few of their stores.
While the U.S. is still waiting for carriers to launch the Z10, it is clear that the rest of the world is embracing BlackBerry 10. While BlackBerry Z10 sales may not reach 1.75M units, 300K is an awfully small estimate considering its already been highly received worldwide.