BlackBerry's Grim Prospects: Z10 Launch Disappoints (Update 1)
NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- The launch of the BlackBerry
Goldman Sachs analyst Simona Jankowski removed the Waterloo, Ontario-based technology firm from Goldman's Americas Buy List due to a disappointing launch at AT&T
The concern has been that BlackBerry 10 is going up against smartphone behemoths like Apple
"We now assign a 20% probability of success for BB10, down from 30% previously, as the disappointing launch of the Z10 at AT&T reduces our confidence that sell-through of the BB10 will be successful in the important US market," Jankowski wrote in her report.
BlackBerry has been losing market share for some time now, owning 3.2% in the fourth quarter, according to research firm IDC. The hope is that BlackBerry 10 will turn that around, but a weak domestic launch makes those prospects a bit harder.
Citi analyst Jim Suva, who rates BlackBerry "sell," noted his checks revealed "shockingly low support by AT&T with extremely limited signage & more signage for Samsung & Apple products," as well as poor product placement, a lack of knowledge on the device, and a surprising low amount of inventory.
Less than 5% of AT&T stores around the country sold out on initial stock of the BlackBerry Z10, with most stores getting a dozen or two smartphones. "In summary, the initial Z10 in the US is a disappointment and a stark contrast to the successful Europe & Canada launches," Suva wrote. He has a $6 price target on BlackBerry shares.