As expected, Research in Motion reported a first-quarter loss on Thursday, but the loss was more expansive than predicted by analysts and the company further disappointed shareholders with an announcement that it is delaying the release of the Black Berry 10 mobile operating system until next year. RIM CEO Thorsten Heins warned last month that the company would post a loss, but the $518 million setback far exceeded the consensus estimate from economists in a recent Thomson Reuters poll.
RIM's sales have plummeted in the last few years, coming in at just $2.8 billion in the most recent quarter, down 43 percent from the first quarter of 2011, when the Waterloo, Ontario company generated revenue of $4.9 billion. The revenue figure also missed the projection of the analysts in the Reuters poll, who expected revenue of $3.1 billion, on average. Shares of RIM plunged $1.27 per share, or 14 percent, in after-hours trading following its announcement. If that loss holds into Friday mo0rning, it will represent the lowest price for the stock in nine years.
During the first quarter, Research In Motion shipped a total of 7.8 million Black Berry smartphones, a decline of 41 percent from the 13.2 million it shipped in the same period a year earlier. The company has failed to keep up in terms of innovation with rivals Apple and Google, as its share pf the mobile OS market has slipped from 41 percent in 2007 to just 3.6 percent during the first three months of 2012.