BlackBerry sales have fallen by 50% in India in Q3-FY14 according to IDC, with only 70,000 units being sold as opposed to 1.5 lakh units it sold in the preceding quarter. However, BlackBerry told Economic Times that IDC’s information is “factually incorrect”.
The IDC data shows that out of total smartphone units shipped during the third quarter of 2013, Android accounted for 81% of the total units. However, during this period, Microsoft’s relatively new Windows Phone OS saw a phenomenal 156% growth, which experts say happened at BlackBerry’s expense. The IDC report also suggested that BlackBerry’s Q3 global market share was at 1.7%, while in comparison, BlackBerry’s closest rival, Windows Phone, is having a worldwide market share at 3.6 per cent.
BlackBerry had released its latest devices (Q and Z series), running on its latest BB10 operating system in India earlier this year and has even cut down prices of its Z10 phone sharply in late September from Rs 43,490 to Rs 29,990.
“BlackBerry does not break our overall sales numbers by country , but we can confirm that our sell-out was significantly higher than the number quoted. IDC captures sell-in numbers only, and is not a true reflection of actual sales-out to end customers,” Varghese M Thomas, Corporate Communications Director for India & SAARC region, said. “Furthermore , in Q3, we had only two BlackBerry 10 products in market namely Z10 and Q10, both of which were in the plus Rs 40,000 price category. Our Q5 and BlackBerry 9720 launches took place later in that quarter and hence is not an accurate measure of sales figures through a complete quarter.”
BlackBerry had scrapped its plans to sell the company and raised $1 billion investment from Fairfax Financial Holdings Limited, earlier this month. BlackBerry CEO Thorsten Heins will be stepping down and will be replaced by former Sybase CEO John S. Chen who has been appointed as the Interim CEO, until the board completes the search for a new CEO. Following this announcement, Chen said that BlackBerry has no plans to shut down its loss-making handset business, while adding that it has sufficient resources to stage a turnaround.
The company also launched its BlackBerry Messenger on Android and iOS and it was downloaded more than 20 million times within a week. However, there is no data on the active user base of the messaging client which is also facing competition from Whatsapp, WeChat, Line among others.