BlackBerry 10 Launches. But Will It Be Profitable?
January 30, 2013

BlackBerry 10 Launches. But Will It Be Profitable?

Enid Burns for — Your Universe Online

BlackBerry 10 launched today. While there is a lot of attention around the new platform that is set to transform the BlackBerry platform, it may not see its biggest day in sales on day one, or even day two. The results of a poll released by mobile app developer BiTE Interactive finds that only 13 percent of respondents would consider buying one, and only 1 percent plan to buy a BlackBerry 10 handset right away.

Low response in buying intent should not assume low interest. About 47 percent of Americans online, according to the survey, find at least one of BlackBerry's new features appealing. However, not everyone is willing to give up their iPhone or Android device: one in four of those polled said they are unlikely to buy a BlackBerry 10 device, CNET reports.

Of the features that those polled expressed interest in, the Time Shift Camera was the most interesting.

The Time Shift Camera is a rapid-shoot feature that lets users take multiple pictures in quick succession, and then select the best shot, explained The Time Shift Camera feature attracted 16 percent of those polled. The feature is favored by women more than men, by 46 percent. Broken down by age, 21 percent of 18-34 year-olds like the Time Shift Camera.

The feature is not entirely unique, HTC offers a similar feature on many of its newer handsets.

"RIM's much anticipated BB10 launch is a major, and much needed overhaul for the one-time smartphone leader and all indications are that it has, at very least succeeded in convincing Americans to give BlackBerry a second look," Joseph Farrell, EVP of Operations at BiTE Interactive, said in a statement revealing the poll results.

"However, it is clear that while all the new features can catch the interest of Android and iOS owners, they key chink in RIM's armor remains its apps ecosystem [sic]. RIM has made great efforts to catch up with iOS and Android in this regard, but it, like Microsoft, is likely to find this far easier said than done. A lot of eyes will be on the new BlackBerry World from day one, as its success is pivotal to that of the BB10 devices as viable mainstream consumer handsets," he added.

Those with an iPhone are the least likely to switch to BlackBerry. About 11 percent of iPhone owners who participated have any interest in owning a BlackBerry 10 handset. That compares to 21 percent of Android owners, who said they would consider a switch to BlackBerry 10. About 44 percent of respondents, in total, said they will not get a BlackBerry 10 device, though 27 percent said they are likely to give the platform a try.

"RIM's challenge is compounded by the fact that Google and Apple have already built up huge mobile user bases who, for the most part, have invested lots of time and money in learning and using their platforms of choice. To switch to any new platform, even between the two, means a new investment of time and resources that many do not wish to spend, let alone taking a perceived risk on the new BB10 platform, no matter how impressive some of the new technology is," Farrell concluded.

BiTE Interactive commissioned YouGov to poll a sample of 1,127 adults, which are viewed as a representative sample. The online poll was conducted between January 23 and January 25, just prior to the launch of the BlackBerry 10. Figures have been weighed and are representative of all U.S. adults over 18.