RBC boosts BlackBerry 10 outlook

RBC boosts BlackBerry 10 outlook

The number of shipments of BlackBerry 10 devices is expected to reach a total of around 14 million units this year, according to RBC analysts.

RBC's Mark Sue and Paul Treiber boosted their forecast in a research note to investors on Tuesday, claiming that the number of shipments for the first quarter of the year ending June 1st, would rise from 2.75 million to 3.5 million.

Both analysts believe that such a solid performance will allow the company to put itself back in profit-making territory this year.

RBC has attributed its predictions to a larger level of distribution of devices using the new operating system.

BB10 devices are now available on 170 carriers in a total of 72 countries.

In a statement RBC said: "Demand appears to be mixed by region; Canada, the UK and the Middle East are seeing the strongest BB10 sell-through. The US, where BlackBerry has a diminished consumer presence, is seeing slower sell-through.

"With higher BB10 revenue and 40 per cent gross margins [reflecting the premium pricing for the BB10 line], we expect BlackBerry to be profitable FY14, overcoming higher promotional expenses.

"Cash flow may break even this quarter considering working capital requirements for the new launches."

Some analysts on Wall Street claim that sales of the company's Q10 handset, which combines a touch-screen and the classic QWERTY keyboard, have been better than anticipated, offsetting a slowdown in sales of the touchscreen Z10, which has been harmed by competition from Samsung and Apple.

In a note last week, expert Peter Misek of Jefferies Research said that the Q10 had appealed to the diehard keyboard enthusiasts loyal to the firm, and would help its earnings exceed previous expectations.

But he also added that it was not just the device that was the Q10's strong point, as the Ontario-based company's mobile device management software was also a cause for great praise.

Quarterly results for BlackBerry, which hopes to change its name from Research in Motion at its annual meeting this summer, will be released on June 28th.