Research In Motion's could unveil BlackBerry OS 6.0, browser demos and the BlackBerry 9670 at its Wireless Enterprise Symposium in Orlando April 26. BroadPoint Amtech analyst Mark McKechnie is expecting some noise about the OS 6.0, which sports multitouch capability, tab switching and new favorites, among many other Apple iPhone-like perks not seen before from the leading enterprise smartphone maker. RIM could also unveil "major content announcements," inking deals with application providers for such areas as music, gaming, mapping and location, movies, and e-commerce.
Analysts are bullish on Research In Motion's upcoming Wireless
Enterprise Symposium, where the company is expected to unveil OS 6.0 for its
BlackBerry smartphones, browser demos and updates on upcoming smartphones such as the BlackBerry
RIM is the leading smartphone maker, with 42 percent of
the market, followed by Apple's iPhone at 25 percent and Microsoft Windows and
Google Android at around 15 percent and 9 percent, respectively. But the
company has slide a bit,
10.5 million devices in the most recent quarter compared to the 11
million analysts expected.
RIM's WES conference kicks off April 26 in Orlando, Fla., where
the company is geared to make product announcements designed to assuage
investors' fears of any downslide.
Among the new points, BroadPoint Amtech analyst Mark McKechnie
is expecting some noise about the BlackBerry OS 6.0
, screenshots, which were published
by Boy Genius Report.
The blog noted the OS 6.0 boasts multitouch capability, tab switching and new favorites
"Something big for OS 6.0 is the homescreen. While
we didn't see any sort of widget support, it appears RIM has made the home screen
completely customizable with pages. You can have your applications on the main
page, then slide left or right to another page with different applications and
browse that way."
This touch user experience, a departure from the keyboard/e-mail
driven mode BlackBerry enterprise users are accustomed to, is something
consumers have become comfortable with from Apple's iPhone and Android
smartphones, such as the Motorola Droid or Google Nexus One.
BGR said the new OS 6.0 is expected in June or July, but
a taste could come this week at WES. This could accompany demos for the new
BlackBerry browser, which is allegedly three times more efficient for bandwidth
than Apple or Android browser and could be ready in July or August.
"The UI is CRITICAL in our opinion to providing easy
access to RIM's App World, which we view as rich but under-appreciated partly
due to its heavy 'business' positioning and challenging user
interface," McKechnie wrote in his April 21 research note.
RIM could also unveil "major content announcements,"
inking deals with application providers for such areas as music, gaming, mapping
and location, movies, and e-commerce.
"While we view the often quoted "number of apps"
metrics as a poor indicator given that five killer apps could beat 10,000 losers,
RIM's apps store boasts 6,000 apps versus Apple's at 185,000-plus and Android at
38,000-plus," McKechnie said.
No. 1 U.S. carrier Verizon Wireless is the premier
carrier of RIM BlackBerry devices, but McKechnie said unit shipments to Verizon
fell from 2 million in November to less than 400,000 in February. This was
likely due to Verizon's well-marketed push of the Google Android-based
Droid, which sold more than 1 million units in its first 2.5 months.
This has reduced RIM's deep reliance on Verizon and could also
take the focus off of "when does the iPhone come to VZ (we think early
2011)," McKechnie said, adding that RIM should benefit from an
increased push by AT&T for RIM's products in a "post iPhone"
Be that as it may, the analyst said RIM will sell 10
million smartphones through Verizon's channel in 2011 and could grow that number
to 13 million in 2012 if the iPhone somehow doesn't appear on Verizon's
RIM could unveil new handsets at WES, including the high-end BlackBerry
9670. The device, which BGR offers a peek at here
, may use the BlackBerry 0S