BlackBerry Torch launch stutters

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BlackBerry Torch launch stutters

RIM's latest smartphone is a slow burner.

Research in Motion's would-be iPhone challenger, the BlackBerry Torch, has failed to light up sales in the US, following its release last Thursday.

Analysts have estimated weekend sales of between 100,000 to 150,000, paling in comparison to the 1.7 million iPhones sold in the same period and growing threat posed by Android legions, estimated by DigiTimes analysts to hit 55 million units in 2010.

RIM's new device, yet to hit Australia, was hoped to raise the BlackBerry's appeal amongst consumers.

But RIM may have to cut prices if it wants to make a dint in the consumer market.  The AT&T supported Torch is already available on Amazon for US$99.

Stifel Nicolaus analyst Sanjiv Wadhwani today said that the US selling price of US$199 on a two year contract with AT&T will have to fall, given it will be competing with the iPhone, according to excerpts of a report posted by ZDNet blogger, Larry Dignan.

Goldman Sachs analysts had already called RIM's August 12 launch "underwhelming", according to Wall Street publisher,

RIM's Australian office has yet to issue a release date or pricing for the Torch, however its spokespeople have said it would be available through Optus, Telstra and Vodafone in the coming months.

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