BlackBerry Z10 off to 'solid start' in U.K., Canada -- analyst

The handset, which was announced last week, is seeing "widespread sellouts" at Carphone Warehouse in the U.K.

BlackBerry Z10
BlackBerry Z10 Josh Miller/CNET

The BlackBerry Z10 is off to a good start in several countries around the world, Jefferies analyst Peter Misek claims in a research note obtained by CNET.

"Our initial checks indicate that sales in the U.K. are off to a strong start," Misek wrote in his note to investors. "Some stores had lineups out front with widespread sell outs of the White Z10 and limited stock of the Black Z10. Also, our checks indicate that preorders in the UAE and Canada have had a solid start."

The U.K. seems to be BlackBerry's best market . Misek said that he has completed "initial checks," and found that Carphone Warehouse, a company that sells handsets, "is seeing widespread sellouts." U.K. carriers O2, Vodafone, Orange, and EE "are seeing robust demand," Misek said.

"We estimate sell-in to be at least several hundred thousand units," Misek wrote to investors. "To put that in perspective, the iPhone had first weekend sales of 5M+ in the U.S. The U.S. is five times larger so continued strong sales could bode very well for BlackBerry."

BlackBerry announced the Z10 last week. The device runs its latest operating system, BlackBerry 10, and comes with a full, 4.2-inch touch screen. The handset will be available internationally first, and then come to the U.S.

Misek is also seeing strong Z10 performance elsewhere around the world. He reported that preorders in Canada are in the "tens of thousands" and could approach or exceed 100,000 units.

Still, Misek's findings are extremely preliminary and might not hint at future performance. The only way to handicap a smartphone's success is to give it some time on store shelves. For now, that's what the Z10 is lacking.

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