As expected, Research In Motion recorded another quarter in the red, losing $114 million in its fiscal third quarter ending ended Dec. 1 as buyers hold off until the release of the new BlackBerry 10 platform next month.
Revenue was $2.7 billion during the three-month period, the company reported Thursday, down five per cent from the previous quarter and down a whopping 57 per cent from the same period a year ago when revenue was $5.2 billion for the quarter.
During the Q3 quarter RIM shipped 6.9 million BlackBerrys, down from the 7.4 million it shipped in the second quarter of this fiscal year.
On the other hand it shipped about 255,000 Playbook tablets, up from 130,000 the period before -- although many of those tablets were heavily discounted. It also managed to increase cash from the previous quarter to $2.9 billion, which it will need to help market BB10
. And the net loss for the quarter of $114 million wasn't as bad as the $142 million it lost in Q2. Subscribers dropped to 79 million in the quarter from 80 million in Q2. From the point of view of cash, revenue and subscribers, RIM is treading water.
The company said thanks to cost cutting and layoffs, it achieved its target of saving $1 billion in the current fiscal year three months ahead of schedule. But it still expects to have another operating loss in the fourth quarter.
But enterprise telecom managers will be wondering about news that came out during a conference call between RIM executives and financial analysts that the company will change the number of services and fees it charges organizations using the upcoming BlackBerry Enterprise Service 10, its mobile management platform for BlackBerry and other mobile operating systems. BES 10, run across RIM’s private network, is expected to launch in May.
Heins didn’t offer details, but said a "menu" of offerings will be available, possibly by industry, with fees based on network usage levels as well as new “value-added” services. One goal, he said, is pulling in new revenue for RIM. “We plan to offer a range of security, mobile device and application management services, in addition to communication services," he said. We will position BlackBerry Enterprise Service as the leading cross-platform enterprise mobile decide management service,” he said.
Corporate subscribers will have the option of not taking up premium service, and they will generate either less revenue to RIM than they do now, Heins said, or none at all.
The transition to the new model will take a year, he said.
Among the advantages, he said, is that it will allow application developers and other partners access to a broader number of subscribers.
Rogers taking orders for BB10
"RIM continued to execute on its product roadmap plans and to deliver on key financial metrics as it gets set for the global launch of BlackBerry 10," Heins said in a statement as the quarterly financials were released.