BlackBerry downtime: RIM executives explain

Millions of BlackBerry users around the globe were affected by Internet service problems from 10 October to 13 October 2011.

The problem was resolved this morning (13 October), and BlackBerry parent Research In Motion (RIM) said that they continue to monitor the situation to ensure ongoing stability.

RIM explained that a review of their operations and infrastructure will now take place to understand the cause.

A lack of feedback

One of the biggest criticisms from BlackBerry users about the problems was the lack of information from RIM regarding the downtime.

In South Africa, Vodacom even apologized for the downtime on behalf of RIM, and pro-actively informed their subscribers as to the problems on RIM’s network.

RIM has however now jumped into action with a damage control campaign.

Damage control

This morning Robin Bienfait, Chief Information Officer at RIM, apologized for the service interruptions and delays and gave an update on the service issues they are trying to solve.

RIM founder and co-CEO Mike Lazaridis used YouTube to apologize for the service outages this week. “We have let many of you down,” said Lazaridis.

Lazaridis added that they are working hard to stabilize the systems, but explained that an ETA on the full recovery of all systems is not possible at this time.

Patrick Spence, Managing Director Global Sales and Regional Marketing at RIM, said in a telephonic interview that he understands the frustration expressed by customers.

Spence explained that even after replacing the faulty switch which caused the problems, it took a lot of time to process the backlog of traffic. Spence highlighted that they move 22 petabytes of data per month.

Faced with the question of whether there will be compensation from RIM for the downtime, Spense sidestepped the issue explaining that their immediate focus is to get the BlackBerry service back to levels which their 70-million users expect from them.

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BlackBerry downtime: RIM executives explain