BlackBerry maker RIM has warned that its profits may fall at the low end of expectations as businesses fail to buy smartphone upgrades amid the economic downturn.
In December 2008, the company predicted that fourth quarter revenue would reach $3bn to $3.5bn.
RIM said new smartphones, such as the touch-screen Storm and high-end Bold, were attracting new sales, but many of its existing customers were not upgrading as frequently as expected.
However, the company said that net subscriber additions are running 20% higher than the 2.9 million it forecast on December 18.
RIM faces tough competition from companies such as Apple, which sold 6.9 million iPhones in the third quarter of 2008.
Last year, RIM co-CEO Jim Balsillie described the current economic environment as ‘a more intense time than I’ve ever known’.
RIM’s fiscal fourth quarter ends 28 February and it will report results on 2 April.