Despite the hundreds of customers who queued up outside Verizon (VZ) stores early Friday to buy the Storm -- Research in Motion's hot new smartphone -- the company is likely to miss its subscriber targets for the quarter that ends Nov. 29, according to a report issued Monday by Citigroup (C) analyst Jim Suva.
Further investigation, he says, showed that the stores only received 40 to 100 units each, and that disappointed customers were told they could order online but wouldn't get their Storms until Dec. 15 -- too late to count in RIM's third quarter sales.
The Storm's late release and its limited supply were among several factors that caused Suva to trim his estimate of new subscriptions this quarter from 2.9 million to 2.7 million. He also predicts Q3 earnings to come in at $0.85 per share on sales of $2.85 billion -- well below the Street's consensus of $0.91 EPS on sales of $2.96 billion.
Among the other clouds on RIM's horizon, as Suva sees them:
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