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Report: BlackBerry Will be Threatened by iPhone

By Sue Marek

Needham & Co. analyst Charlie Wolf cut his rating on Research in Motion's stock to an underperform from a previous rating of hold because he believes the company's strength in the consumer market "is bound to come under siege because of the iPhone." Wolf added that until the launch of Apple's new iPhone, much of RIM's BlackBerry success was due to a lack of compelling rivals in the consumer space. He added that much of RIM's recent gains have come from the consumer market. The introduction of the BlackBerry Pearl has helped the firm but now Wolf says that the "days of no competition are over."

RIM is trying to fight back against the iPhone by launching new models such as the BlackBerry Bold and the upcoming BlackBerry Thunder. Nevertheless, Wolf lowered his 2008 earnings estimate for RIM to $3.70 per share from $4.05 per share and reduced his 2009 outlook to a profit of $4.80 a share from $6.25 a share. [FierceWireless]

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