Here’s one data point we hadn’t seen: “With no new US product launches this quarter, RIM now has the lowest number of SKUs at US carriers since mid-2007,” RBC analyst Mike Abramsky writes today. (SKUs are “stock keeping units,” or number of phone models.)
Coincidentally, that’s when Apple’s iPhone launched — mid-2007.
The problem is that RIM’s BlackBerry software and app ecosystem just can’t compete with Android and iOS, and RIM has been extremely slow to react. It’s promising new “superphones” running an OS called QNX, but those won’t be ready until next year. That’s an eternity in the mobile business. So carriers are putting newer Android devices on their shelves.
(That’s not to say that RIM couldn’t benefit from a simplified product lineup. But that’s not the trend here.)
As we’ve written many times, RIM looks like it’s in the same position that Palm was a few years ago, leapfrogged by the competition and slow to respond.
Yes, RIM is still profitable, and still has a big enterprise presence, which Palm didn’t have. And RIM’s business is growing rapidly in other parts of the world, which wasn’t true for Palm, either.
But losing the U.S. market is not good news for RIM.
Meanwhile, another analyst has another take on RIM today: Things can’t get worse, so it’s only uphill from here. We’re not so sure about that.
Here’s the chart of Android kicking RIM’s butt in the U.S., specifically at Verizon:
[credit provider=”comScore data, Business Insider chart”]