BlackBerry outage leaves customers seething

Update: BlackBerry service returns to normal...
Written by Steve Ranger, Global News Director

Update: BlackBerry service returns to normal...

BBM outage

Some users experienced problems with BBM as a result of the BlackBerry outageImage: RIM

Update: RIM has confirmed the BlackBerry service in EMEA is back to normal after a service disruption yesterday.

The company said in a statement: "Yesterday, some BlackBerry subscribers in the EMEA region experienced delays with BlackBerry services. The issue was resolved and services are operating normally. We apologise to those customers who were impacted for any inconvenience."

RIM would not disclose details of how many BlackBerry users were affected by the problem.

A spokeswoman for RIM added that the company is currently investigating the cause of the issue.

Yesterday afternoon the BlackBerry maker confirmed via Twitter that some users in Europe, the Middle East and Africa were "experiencing issues", adding: "We're investigating, and we apologise for any inconvenience."

The impact of the issue seemed to vary - with some BlackBerry users reporting being unable to access the web or email, while other users reported that only email was affected.

By yesterday evening, RIM confirmed BlackBerry email services had been restored, adding in a statement: "Some customers may continue to experience delays with instant messaging and browsing services and our technical teams are working to return services to normal operation as quickly as possible."

Mobile operators made an effort to inform BlackBerry users of the service issue. Vodafone said in a note on its support forum: "We are aware that some BlackBerry users are currently unable to access BlackBerry services, such as BlackBerry Messenger, across all UK mobile networks. We have been advised that RIM is working to resolve the issue as a matter of urgency."

T-Mobile texted BlackBerry users, saying: "We're sorry, some BlackBerry customers are currently unable to connect to data services. BlackBerry are looking into this and hope to resolve it soon, so there's no need to get in touch."

BlackBerry users themselves took to Twitter to voice their unhappiness at the service problems, with Twitter user Alastair Campbell noting yesterday: "'My blackberry' trending ought to be good news for blackberry in these techie days. But it's not. My blackberry in blackout mode. Sort pls."

In other BlackBerry-related news, RIM demoed a contactless content-sharing system running on NFC-enabled BlackBerry smartphones.

RIM's contactless sharing system, called BlackBerry Tag, will be rolled out with the next OS update to its BlackBerry 7 OS, the company said yesterday.

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