TORONTO: Research in Motion Ltd (RIM), the maker of the BlackBerry, said its third-quarter earnings jumped 45% as sales keep surging overseas despite tough competition in the smartphone market.
The results beat analyst expectations, and the company provided a forecast for the current quarter that also exceeded Wall Street expectations. Its shares rose in extended trading.
RIM said it shipped 14.2 million BlackBerrys in the quarter, narrowly beating Apple Inc's iPhone sales in its latest quarter, which ended in October.
Most of RIM's growth is now coming from markets outside the United States, Canada and Britain, where the BlackBerry is already the business phone of choice.
In August, RIM launched the BlackBerry Torch, with a touchscreen and a slide-out keyboard for an overall look that's similar to competing devices. It also refreshed the look of the operating system.
RIM has said it will launch its first Tablet computer, the PlayBook, early next year. On the call, Balsillie didn't give a more specific date. He said the initial versions will be WiFi only.
BGC Financial analyst Colin Gillis said the results were "definitely solid" but said there's nothing that alleviates his concern that RIM will lose market share to Apple's iPhone and phones running Google Inc's Android software next year.
"Everyone knew there was a strong quarter coming out of the company and they delivered," Gillis said. "The concern over the future is still intact. There's definitely still demand for the phones in the international markets.
"Let's see what happens next quarter when they report and give guidance. It will be that May quarter where you'll see if they pulled through or you're going to see the cracks." - AP