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RIM shares take a bath after uninspiring BlackBerry 10 unwrap

Last Chance Saloon bouncers eye troubled Canadian drinker

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Investors were less than impressed with Research in Motion's demo of its new BlackBerry 10 operating system and the developer tools to go with it, sending shares sliding by 5.76 per cent.

New CEO Thorsten Heins pulled out the new gear at his first BlackBerry World keynote speech yesterday, giving folks a look at what the OS should be able to do. The start of the conference also marked the release of the developer kit for the system so app-makers can start have some snazzy stuff ready by the time the first handsets come out at the end of the year.

BlackBerry 10 is widely seen as the last chance saloon for the troubled Canadian phone-maker, which has struggled to look like it's keeping up with the likes of Apple and Android. And RIM needs developers to make a ton of apps for the new OS if it has any chance of taking off.

However, investor confidence in the firm seems to have evaporated. The stock has plummeted 72 per cent in the last year, helped by a 5.76 per cent fall yesterday from the previous day's close, leaving the shares trading at $13.48 on the NASDAQ.

One problem may be that RIM still hasn't given out many clues about what the hardware to go with the new system might be like. At BlackBerry World, it handed out a prototype device to developers, the Dev Alpha, although the company said the actual mobiles won't look anything like it.

In general, RIM has not done a good job of reassuring investors that it can recover from the market share shrinkage caused by Apple and Android phone-makers like Samsung.

Aside from failing to come up with a smartphone that can claw back some BlackBerry popularity, the firm also suffered after a three day outage towards the end of last year that was handled horribly, and from low sales of its unloved fondleslab the PlayBook. ®

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