BlackBerry to slip below 5 per cent smartphone share?

Research in Motion Ltd. is in danger of sliding below a five per cent share of the global smartphone market and may have to dip into its $2.1 billion cash stockpile, an analyst report warned Monday.

RBC analysts Mark Sue and Paul Treiber released a report todaysuggesting RIM could soon drop below thatthreshold as chief rivalsApple Inc. and Samsung continue tomake gains at RIM’s expense, theToronto Star reports.

“The risk of becoming a sub-five per cent share player is a threat to aturnaround,” the report stated.

If RIM falls below that milestone, it will be harder for the company toattract app developers. The continuing lack of mobile apps would inturn make the BlackBerry even less appealing to buyers, the analystswrote. The glum research note came out on the eve of RIM’s BB10 Jamdeveloper conference in Orlando, Fl. where 5,000 developers,journalists and customers are gathering for an unveiling of the firm’sBlackBerry 10 operating system.

Sue and Treiber also downgraded their rating on RIM shares to“speculative risk” from “above average risk” and predicted theWaterloo, Ont. company may not even hit the 10.5 million mark in newBlackBerry device sales expected by most Wall Street analysts duringthe current quarter.

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