Research in Motion has just held its earnings call for the first quarter of fiscal 2012, and the news doesn’t look too great.

“Fiscal 2012 has gotten off to a challenging start,” said Jim Balsillie, RIM’s Co-CEO. “The slowdown we saw in the first quarter is continuing into Q2, and delays in new product introductions into the very late part of August is leading to a lower than expected outlook in the second quarter.”

The delay in production of new products doesn’t bode well as RIM faces still competition from Google, Apple and Microsoft in the smartphone market, and form numerous competitors in the tablet market.

During the call, RIM confirmed that it shipped 500,000 units of its new PlayBook and 13.2 million BlackBerries. That last figure might not seem too bad, but here’s a figure to offer in comparison: 18.65 million iPhones sold, according to Apple’s recent quarterly earnings call.

And note the difference there. BlackBerries shipped. iPhones sold. It seems likely that many of the devices that RIM reported today are still sitting on store shelves.

As RIM didn’t meet its projections, the company says it’s announcing a “cost optimization program” that will include an undisclosed number of layoffs. It also revised projections downwards for the rest of the year and earnings per share for the full year fiscal 2012 are now expected to be between $5.25 and $6.00. Upon word of the report, RIM stocks fell sharply today.