BlackBerry users ready to jump ship?

A new survey shows a high number of BlackBerry users eyeing rival phones.

By Kim Peterson Apr 1, 2010 10:49AM
BlackBerry. Credit: (© Manu Fernandez/AP)Yet more reasons why Research in Motion (RIMM) could be worried. A new study says that BlackBerry users are planning to jump ship to Apple (AAPL) or Google (GOOG).

Online research firm Crowd Science says that BlackBerry users are more likely to find a new phone than users of the iPhone or the Android operating system, according to MarketWatch.

Nearly 40% of BlackBerry owners said they "definitely or probably" would switch to an iPhone, according to the study from Crowd Science. Another third said they would switch to an Android phone by Google.

In fairness to RIM, the number of people who say they're switching is far more than the number who actually do. Still, the responses don't look good for RIM, especially compared with the loyalty from iPhone users (of whom 92% say they'll stay with theirs).

RIM has begun losing market share, dropping 1% in the fourth quarter of 2009 from the third quarter, MarketWatch reports. Apple's market share rose 1.2% in that time.

But you can't blame the iPhone entirely for distracting unhappy BlackBerry users. The BlackBerry brand just doesn't seem to be getting the loyalty that other phone brands get, said the chief executive of Crowd Science.

BlackBerry users have had to suffer a number of technical problems lately. And Research in Motion shares have dropped the most in five months lately after saying that BlackBerry prices are dropping, according to Bloomberg.

The average price of a BlackBerry sold to a carrier dropped to $311 last quarter and will drop to between $305 and $310 this quarter, Bloomberg reported. That cuts into profit margins.

But Michael Comeau at Minyanville is still bullish on RIM, and says he's buying the stock despite some stumbles. He likes the latest quarterly revenue figure from the company, which were up by 18% from the year-ago period (the figure was, however, below analyst expectations). And the current quarter revenue forecast is up 27% from the year-ago period, he writes.

"Call me crazy, but Research in Motion is doing okay for a company that's losing market share," Comeau writes.

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