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BlackBerry sells 1 million Z10 smartphones, topping expectations

March 28, 2013|By Salvador Rodriguez
  • Analysts expected Canadian cellphone maker BlackBerry to sell more than 900,000 units of its new Z10 smartphone in its fiscal fourth quarter, but it ended up selling 1 million.
Analysts expected Canadian cellphone maker BlackBerry to sell more than… (Frank Gunn / Associated…)

BlackBerry posted a surprise profit in its fiscal fourth quarter and revealed it sold 1 million Z10 smartphones, which was more than what analysts were expecting.

Analysts were anticipating the Canadian cellphone maker to sell more than 900,000. The Z10 launched in the U.S. with AT&T last week. Earlier this week, the Z10 began selling from T-Mobile, and it launched Thursday with Verizon. The sales that are included come from Britain, Canada and other markets, where the Z10 phone sold for about a month before the quarter ended.

BlackBerry has tied its hopes of remaining relevant in the smartphone market to the new smartphone and  BlackBerry 10, its all-new operating system.

In general, investors seem pleased with quarterly report and Z10 sales. BlackBerry stock was up more than 2% in mid-session trading.

For the fiscal fourth quarter ended March 2, Blackberry posted a $98-million profit compared to a loss of $125 million loss in the year-earlier period. The profit mainly resulted from a tax gain.

Revenue for the quarter fell 36% to $2.7 billion from a year-earlier $4.2 billion. The company said it had a net loss of 3 million subscribers in the fourth quarter, the second quarter in a row that BlackBerry has lost subscribers. That leaves BlackBerry with 76 million subscribers.

But BlackBerry may be able to gain more subscribers going forward if sales of the Z10 remain strong. The company will also be helped by the launch of its next smartphone, the Q10, which features a physical QWERTY keyboard. That device is expected in the U.S. some time in May or June.

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