And Britain's most popular smartphone is...

Picture of a BlackBerry...BlackBerry! No, you read that correctly. According to new figures from BlackBerry maker Research In Motion (RIM) reported in today's Telegraph, the company now reaches 8.5m subscribers in the UK and has some 27.7% market share here. Worldwide the figures also appear to be up - so is there a problem?
The short answer is yes. Market share continues to fall in the US, competitors such as Apple and Android continue to do well and the PlayBook - BlackBerry's entry into the tablet market - absolutely tanked. Reviews were hostile, it's only really useful if you have a BlackBerry phone (it ties itself to its Internet connection) and its app store is populated only sparsely. It saw a major price drop very quickly after its release and in America all models have now been reduced substantially.

Plus the forthcoming software, BlackBerry 10, was due this financial quarter and has now been delayed until an unspecified time later this year. It is perhaps no surprise that the joint CEOs have now departed - it's difficult to see how they could have appeased Wall Street if they had stayed in place.

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And Britain's most popular smartphone is...

Not all bad news

Nonetheless the view that the company is doomed is very Western-centric. The youth market and developing world have ensured that the company has seen 35% growth year on year and now has 75m users worldwide.

The outage in October was of course a disaster, particularly for a company that has its reliability at the core of its selling points. Unlike other handset manufacturers, BlackBerry handles emails through its own servers so there was nobody else to blame.

But the increased customer base overall suggests that even if we perceive a falling market share this isn't the case worldwide. More interestingly it isn't the case in the UK, no matter what we've been conditioned to think.
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