Blackberry maker Research in Motion (RIM) expects sales to drop by up to 18% for its fourth quarter results in March compared to the same period in 2011.
The warning came in RIM’s third quarter results, which saw sales fall year-on-year by 6% from $5.2bn (£3.5bn) for its December quarter. During the quarter RIM shipped approximately 14.1 million Blackberry smartphones and approximately 150,000 Blackberry Playbook tablets.
But RIM estimated sales would take a much larger hit next quarter ranging from $4.6-$4.9 billion compared to $5.6bn for March 2011. Blackberry smartphone shipments are expected to be between 11 million and 12 million units.
The results come following a global outage in October, which left millions of Blackberry users unable to access e-mails, browse or use its instant messaging platform, Blackberry Messenger (BBM).
“As part of our commitment to improving our performance to better meet the expectations of shareholders and customers, we continue to evaluate ways to improve in several areas of the company’s operations,” said Jim Balsillie and Mike Lazaridis, co-CEOs at RIM in a joint statement.
“It may take some time to realise the benefits of these efforts and the platform transition that we are undertaking, but we continue to believe that RIM has the right set of strengths and capabilities to maintain a leading role in the mobile communications industry.”