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A salesman explains the features of a blackberry phone to a customer inside a showroom in Mumbai August 30, 2010. (DANISH SIDDIQUI/REUTERS)
A salesman explains the features of a blackberry phone to a customer inside a showroom in Mumbai August 30, 2010. (DANISH SIDDIQUI/REUTERS)

RIM cuts some BlackBerry prices in India Add to ...

BlackBerry-maker Research In Motion has cut prices of some of its smartphone models in India by up to 27 per cent, in a move to boost sales in the world’s second-biggest mobile phone market.

India is one of the few growing markets for RIM, which is facing tough competition from Apple Inc. and high-end devices on Google Inc’s Android platform used by a range of handsetmakers, including Samsung Electronics.

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RIM said on Wednesday it cut prices of four of its smartphone models, including the entry-level Curve 8520, which is its best-selling smartphone model in India.

Sunil Dutt, managing director for RIM’s Indian operations, said the four models accounted for about 60 per cent of the company’s sales in India, where BlackBerry devices have gained popularity among the youth.

The price cuts are aimed at making the phones “more accessible to a wider number of consumers in the country”, Mr. Dutt said in a phone interview.

RIM does not disclose country-specific shipment figures. India’s CyberMedia Research estimates RIM ranked third last year with a 15 per cent share of the country’s smartphone market, trailing Nokia’s 38 per cent market share and Samsung’s 28 per cent.

Smartphones currently account for just over 6 per cent of total handset sales in India, a market which is extremely price sensitive and most use their phones only for voice calls and text message. But the segment grew 87 per cent last year to 11.2 million phones shipped, according to CyberMedia.

RIM cut the maximum retail price of the Curve 8520 model by 18 per cent to 8,999 rupees and that of Torch 9860 model by 26.7 per cent to 21,990 rupees. The other two models whose prices were cut are Curve 9360 and Curve 9380.

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