BlackBerry Q1 Results Should Offer Clues to BB10’s Success
BlackBerry, the smartphone pioneer born as Research In Motion, will post first-quarter results early Friday, offering another update on its efforts to reclaim its former glory — or at least get financially back on track.
This will be the first time BlackBerry will have a full quarter of U.S. shipment data for its new Z10 touchscreen phone to report (not included: U.S. shipments of the keyboard-equipped Q10, which debuted in the States earlier this month). As such, it should provide a bit more visibility into just what sort of momentum is developing behind the company’s new BlackBerry 10 operating system.
That is much-needed specificity at this point because analyst estimates for BB10 smartphone shipments are varied, to say the least. At the lower end, expectations are for roughly 2.75 million units shipped; at the higher end, upward of five million. Shipments for older-model devices are expected to come in at about five million.
Should BlackBerry hit the higher range of those numbers with strong sell-through to consumers, then that will be a good indication that its fortunes are improving and a turnaround could be in the distant offing — particularly if it exceeds consensus estimates for the quarter, which are for earnings of six cents a share on revenue of $3.36 billion.
And if it doesn’t?
Well, then the struggle continues, with the threat of an outright foundering or restructuring of BlackBerry’s business looming in the distance.
“What’s at stake here is the future of the company we know as BlackBerry,” Forrester analyst Charles Golvin told AllThingsD. “If they can’t demonstrate an upswing in momentum for their devices, then it reduces the amount of time before they’re forced to transition to a software and services company.”