• Latin America revenues down 62 per cent
• Interest wanes among J’cans
SMARTPHONE maker BlackBerry has admitted that competition from other devices is hurting its business in traditionally loyal international markets.
The revelation in a regulatory filing late Tuesday was made against the background of the Canadian firm reporting a US$965 million ($99.6 billion) quarterly loss, with the company noting that it is losing market share to Android devices in normally solid geographic areas.
"The intense competition impacting the company's financial and operational results that previously affected demand in the United States market is now being experienced globally, including in international markets where the company has historically experienced rapid growth," BlackBerry said.
"The increase in competition encountered by the company in international markets is due to the recent entry into those markets of global competitors offering high-end devices that compete with the company's BlackBerry 10 devices, as well as other competitors targeting those markets with lower-end Android-based devices that compete with the company's lower-cost devices," the company added.
Furthermore, BlackBerry attributed the decline in business to consumer preferences for devices with access to the broadest number of applications, such as those available in the iOS and Android environments.
Among the affected markets are Asia-Pacific, Africa, the Middle East, and Latin America, the company said.
Latin America revenues declined by 62 per cent to US$196 million over the review quarter, compared to the corresponding period last year. BlackBerry does not report financial information on the Caribbean specifically, but trends indicate that the smartphone's popularity is waning in Jamaica, the biggest Caribbean Community (Caricom) market.
Interest, as a measure of popularity, could eventually reflect in purchasing patterns. And Jamaicans are now more interested in searching about Samsung than BlackBerry on the internet, according to GoogleTrends.
GoogleTrends data highlights that for every 100 searches for devices within Jamaica since September, Samsung interest averaged 90, outscoring that of BlackBerry at 80 and the iPhone at 68. The rise may continue as Samsung's growth has more pace when compared with BB.
The Google search engine geographically compiles searches over time. Its affiliated site, GoogleTrends, then gauges the popularity of these terms from 0-100. Last year in Jamaica, BB scored 73 with Android at 27 and the iPhone at 31.