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Shares of Research In Motion (Nasdaq: RIMM ) have risen more than 1% on a down day for the market, doubtlessly thanks to yesterday's announcement that the comapny would cut 2,000 jobs from its global workforce of 19,000.
In a press release, RIM called the cuts "a prudent and necessary step" for pursuing growth, rather than a reaction to competitive pressure from Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL ) , HTC, Samsung, and the rest of Google's (Nasdaq: GOOG ) Android licensees. But surely the latter must be true. Just look at the numbers.
A recent study by ChangeWave Research found that only 4% of 4,163 respondents planned to purchase a new BlackBerry within the next 90 days, versus 48% who planned to purchase an iPhone, and 32% who planned on getting an Android phone.
Can you imagine what happens when the iPhone 5 reaches the market? Interest in the BlackBerry could all but disappear. Considering that doctors once named an ailment "BlackBerry Thumb," a vanishing act of that magnitude would be downright remarkable.
Last quarter, the BlackBerry maker missed its own revenue targets, and slashed guidance well below analyst estimates at the time. Most telling, revenue growth has outpaced profit growth over the past five years, as gross margin has declined from more than 54% in fiscal 2007 to 44% in the just-completed fiscal year. RIM's growth has come at a price that laid-off employees are about to bear.
Will the layoffs change the equation? You tell me. Please vote in the poll below, then leave a comment to tell us your thoughts about RIM's business. You can also add Research In Motion to your watchlist for up-to-date analysis on the stock as soon as it's published.