RIM Posts Larger-than-expected Loss, Shares Plunge

TORONTO (AP) — Shares of BlackBerry maker Research In Motion slid in premarket trading Friday after the company posted a loss in the first quarter and failed to break out how many of its new BlackBerrys were sold.

Analysts were hoping to see how BlackBerry's new touchscreen Z10 phone sold for a full quarter in the U.S. market. RIM only said it 6.8 million phones overall versus 7.8 million last year. That includes older models.

RIM's new Blackberry 10 operating system is widely seen as critical to the company's comeback.

Its shares dropped $2.57, or 17.8 percent, to $11.91 in premarket trading.

The Canadian company said that it lost $84 million, or 16 cents a share, in the three months ended June 1 on revenue of $3.1 billion. It lost $518 million, or 99 cents per share, on revenue of $2.8 billion a year ago.

Analysts expected RIM to earn 5 cents a share on revenue of $3.37 billion.

RIM also said it anticipates it will generate an operating loss in the second quarter.

"The smartphone market remains highly competitive, making it difficult to estimate units, revenue and levels of profitability," RIM said in a statement.

Colin Gillis, an analyst at BGC Partners, said it's tough for RIM because it's hard to make money on handsets now.

"There are a lot of people that haven't been able to make it happen. For all the talk about Apple and Samsung, there are companies like Nokia and HTC," Gillis said.

Gillis said things look bleaker for the company and it's going to continue to be a struggle.

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