Verizon, RIM pleased with BlackBerry Storm sales

One month after its initial launch, new shipments of Research In Motion's BlackBerry Storm are coming into the United States, and both RIM and Verizon Wireless said they were pleased with how well the phone was selling.

The Storm, the first touchscreen BlackBerry, is being sold exclusively by Verizon for $199 with a two-year contract. Stores sold out of the phone on its initial launch on Nov. 21, and some customers complained at the time that stores were understocked. Verizon said yesterday that new shipments were coming into the Northwest, and Verizon spokeswoman Brenda Raney confirmed that shipments would be coming in to other parts of the country as well.

RIM, which posted stronger revenues for the third quarter yesterday, said it was pleased with how well the Storm was selling. The company said it was not able to meet product demand levels for North America, even though it replenished its supply of the phone; that Nov. 21 was the biggest single day for BlackBerry signups in the company's history; and that 75 percent of sales of the Storm are new customers.

Verizon also beat back rumors that were circulating on several blogs that there was a high return rate for the Storm. The blog Boy Genius Report quoted a Verizon spokesperson yesterday as saying that just the opposite was true. "The Storm has the lowest return rate of any of our PDAs and at this point in its life cycle, it has the lowest return rate of any PDA we currently sell," they said. Verizon has not released any sales numbers for the phone.

For more:
- see this release about the shipments
- see this post about RIM's news on the Storm
- see this post about the return rate

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