Research in Motion Higher Ahead of Earnings; Touch Screen Blackberry Coming?

| About: BlackBerry Ltd. (BB)
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Research In Motion (RIMM) shares are higher ahead of the company’s earnings report coming up this afternoon for its fiscal second quarter ended August. The Street consensus is for $1.36 billion in revenue and EPS of 50 cents.

That said, expectations for the quarter have been gradually ratcheting higher. Yesterday, CIBC’s Michael Ounjian raised his price target on the stock to $100 from $70, but repeated his Neutral rating on the stock. Ounjian raised his EPS for the February 2008 fiscal year to $2.11 from $1.96; for ‘09 he goes to $3.05 from $2.49. His estimate for the November quarter goes to 58 cents, from 53 cents.

This morning, Bank of America’s Tim Long asserted that the company “could see some upside” to his estimates for the second quarter. He expects revenue at the high end of the company’s guidance of $1.3 billion to $1.65 billion; he sees 1.38 million new subscribers, with unit shipments of 3,174,000 at an average ASP of $341.

Meanwhile, Rob Sanderson of American Technology Research today notes that the blog Boy Genius Report has posted what appears to be a picture of the company’s first iPhone-like touch screen model, the Blackberry 9000. According to the post, the phone will be 3G, with a 600 MHz processor. The picture on their site shows no keyboard; Sanderson says he wonders if the company would really release a phone with no keyboard at all.

Research In Motion today is up $2.38, or 2.5%, at $98.66.