MSFT - Get Report) Windows 8 phones have been a bust for Nokia ( NOK - Get Report). But Palm never had 80 million subscribers globally like RIM. Of these subscribers, only eight million are in the U.S. RIM had 20 million US subscribers a few years ago and the smart phone market has doubled since then. So, RIM has certainly missed out on a golden opportunity in the U.S. However, 80 million subscribers is still 80 million subscribers. Imagine if you were one of these 80 million (I'm not). You've been laughed at and ridiculed for the last three years by your friends and family. Yet, you still like your BlackBerry. I assume that a lot of those subscribers are going to buy the new BlackBerrys when they become available. According to surveys that Scotia Capital analyst Gus Papageorgiou has seen, 70% of existing RIM subscribers plan to upgrade. That would be massive and I can't quite imagine that's possible even in my wildest dreams. However, 30-40 million out of 80 million seems very doable (including a few million of completely new BlackBerry subscribers). RIM already has a bunch of relationships with global carriers already. Palm did not. So, the RIM optimists -- just like the Palm optimists -- are right that, if (and it's a big if) RIM can sell a lot of phones, this is a very profitable business and a very undervalued stock. I was on Breakout on Yahoo! Finance with Jeff Macke last week talking about my views on BlackBerry. Jeff asked me if I'm just in this as a trade until the new phones ship. Of course, everything's a trade, and I might decide to get out of the stock if it runs up too much between now and February. However, I'm envisioning this as a one year trade. RIM could be the AOL ( AOL stock of 2013. AOL was left for dead in August 2011 after bad earnings. It was at $10/share. Earlier last month, it closed above $40. Yet, no one discussed it all the way up from $10. I think RIM will be the same. The story will play out in 2013 over multiple earnings reports. At the time of publication the author had ositions in RIMM, YHOO and AAPL. Follow @ericjackson This article was written by an independent contributor, separate from TheStreet's regular news coverage.