Ouch. Things haven't exactly been going well for Research in Motion of late, but its latest train-wreck of a quarterly earnings makes its troubles so far feel like the good old days.
The figures tell their own story: a $518m quarterly loss – RIM's first since 2004, a 41% drop in smartphone sales year on year, and 5,000 more jobs being axed. But arguably the worst news is that BlackBerry 10 will only be ready in Q1 2013.
Nobody was expecting stellar results from RIM's latest report card – one analyst described the company's outlook as “terrible with a scoop of worse”, but the actual figures [PDF] are even worse than forecast.
The company brought in $2.8bn in total revenues for the quarter, a full 33% down on the previous three months. A total of 7.8m BlackBerry handsets and 260,000 PlayBook tablets were shipped – yes, shipped not necessarily sold – over the three months, also well down on the previous quarter.
The $518m net loss is the company's first quarterly loss since 2004, and is set to trigger a further wave of cutbacks that will see another 5,000 jobs axed.
And just when RIM could desperately do with some positive news to provide a ray of hope in what is otherwise a very bleak outlook, the company has announced that its “Hail Mary” shot – the much-vaunted BlackBerry 10 OS – has been delayed and will only launch in Q1 2013 at the earliest.
RIM didn't elaborate much on the reasons why, saying only that the integration of some BB10 features and a higher-than-anticipated volume of code was taking longer than expected to work through – no surprise considering the massive staff cuts the company has endured over the past 18 months.
Ever on message, RIM CEO Thorsten Heins said he was “confident that the first BlackBerry 10 smartphones will provide a ground-breaking next generation smartphone user experience”, but also admitted the next several quarters would continue to be tough on the company.