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BlackBerry superphones delayed as profits plunge

RIM has been forced to delay its next-generation smart phones until later 2012, amid dismal financial results.

BlackBerry maker RIM has been forced to delay its next smart phones, as company profits plunge, our sister site CNET News reports.

RIM CEO Mike Lazaridis has confirmed that smart phones running BB10, the latest version of the BlackBerry operating system, won't be arriving until late next year, giving Android, Apple and Windows Phone devices even more time in the spotlight.

The first of the so-called 'superphones' is rumoured to be the BlackBerry London, a snap of which leaked last month. It's expected to pack a great big touchscreen, a 1.5GHz dual-core processor and an 8-megapixel camera.

Cryptic sources have hinted that it's "thinner than the iPhone 4".

The next generation of BlackBerry mobiles will be running QNX, the same OS that's purring under the bonnet of the BlackBerry PlayBook. Lazaridis says the BB10 delay is because the microprocessors that will be powering the new phones won't be available until the middle of the year.

The news will make BlackBerry fans wince, and there's more bad news -- RIM revealed that net income this year fell by 71 per cent. Many of the company's woes seem to stem from poor PlayBook sales, with RIM picking up a $365m (roughly £235m) bill for unsold tablets.

The catastrophic BBM outage earlier hasn't helped customer confidence either. Can RIM claw its way back? Send us your predictions in the comments or on our Facebook wall.