||10-05-2004 07:36 AM
[2004-10-05] BlackBerry bears fruit in face of rivals.
ABOUT a year ago, PalmOne was seen as having the upper hand against the BlackBerry, the wireless e-mail device made by Research in Motion (RIM) that has since become the gadget of choice among celebrities and politicians.
PalmOne had millions of customers while BlackBerry users numbered in the hundreds of thousands. Along with its acquisition of Handspring, PalmOne acquired the Treo, a device that combined a BlackBerry-like e-mail device with a Palm-based handheld computer with all the extras the BlackBerry lacks, such as games, cameras and music players.
But, somehow, sales of PalmOne's Treo lagged behind those of the BlackBerry and things have never been better for RIM.
Last week, Ontario-based RIM reported a 147 per cent year-on-year increase in second-quarter revenues. After reaching one million BlackBerry subscribers in February, RIM anticipates having two million by the end of the year.
'I've followed RIM for five years and, once, I made a list of all the imminent BlackBerry killers,' said Mr Michael Urlocker, a technology hardware analyst with UBS Investment Research.
'There were between five and 10 of these things. The fact that the alleged killers have all disappeared shows that RIM hasn't just been lucky so far. They've been more right about the product and technology than wrong.'
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