Fears in corporate America over the potential shutdown of Research In Motion's BlackBerry wireless email network was a boon for Palm. The company said sales of its Treo smartphone more than doubled over a year ago last quarter, causing Palm's third-quarter revenue to increase 36 percent. Palm said that during the fiscal-year quarter ending February 28, it shipped 564,000 Treo smartphones and had a sell-through total of 569,000 Treos, up 102 percent over the same quarter of last year. The sales came from both the Treo 650 and the 700w smartphone, the first smartphone to run over Verizon Wireless's EV-DO network.
The question is: Is this growth trend primarily a result of RIM's patent skirmish with NTP, or is it a sign that competitors are making some significant headway against RIM? RIM has already lowered guidance on its subscribers twice with the explanation being that uncertainty around the NTP patent has delayed purchases. With patent litigation issues out of the way, it will be interesting to see if RIM lowers guidance when it reports on April 6.