BlackBerry Z10 harvesting iPhone, Android users

As much as 45 per cent of people buying the BlackBerry Z10 smart phone were users of either Android or iPhone handsets, according to a recent study by Canadian investment firm RBC Capital Markets.

RBC researchers bumped up their earlier forecast saying the Canadian phone maker will likely register a delivery of 500,000 units for February rather than this 350,000 projected for that period. By May, BlackBerry would have shipped two million, according to RBC.

“BlackBerry indicated sell through is 40 per cent above its (low) projections,” according to RBC.

While there may be some supply chain challenges, according the online business site, BlackBerry has bucked earlier Wall Street projections and covered a wider 35 per cent subscriber base in the launch of its new smart phone.


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For example the Z10 sold out in India in just two days and ranked number five in the monthly top 10 phone list of Carphone Warehouse, a large European retailer.

RBC also reported that BlackBerry can count on enterprise users who are now demanding their IT departments for upgrades to Z10 units.

Earlier this week, BlackBerry said it received a massive order from one of its partners.

“An order of one million devices is a tremendous vote of confidence in BlackBerry 10,” Rick Costanzo, EVP of global sales for BlackBerry said in a blog post on Wednesday. “…With strong partner support coupled with this truly re-invented new platform, we have a powerful recipe for success.”

However, the investment company noted that BlackBerry still faces an uphill battle which heavily depends in capturing the United States market which accounts for as much as 20 per cent of the company’s subscriber base. The company is likely to find it harder to market its new handset in the U.S. than it did in Canada.
For one, carrier support is a lot weaker south of the border. Sprint has decided to offer customers on the Q10 model whichs sports a QWERTY keyboard while T-Mobile will be focusing on the Z10.
Consumer interest is also likely to be diverted by the launch of Samsung’s Galaxy S IV.

Data from survey firm comScore indicates that BlackBerry does not even appear in the list of top five phone manufacturers and comes in third (5.9 per cent) behind Android (52.3 per cent) and iOS (37.8 per cent) in terms of operating systems market share.

Another dark cloud looming in the horizon, RBC said, is the fact that BlackBerry is stall falling behind competitors in terms of mobile apps.

“The large number of ‘coming soon’ apps (30 per cent of to 10 free/paid iPhone apps) such as Skype is a lingering annoyance for users,” RBC said.

Popular online destination for downloadable movies, Netflix, has signified it has no plans to develop an application for BlackBerry 10 while other developers are clearly focused on Android and iOS operating systems to bother with the new OS.

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