TECH

Blackberry Outage December 22 Blamed On Flawed Messenger Update

UPDATE 12/23/09 9:17 AM: Research In Motion has reportedly issued a statement stating that the Blackberry outage on December 22 likely stemmed from a flawed Blackberry Messenger update.

A flaw in two recently released versions of BlackBerry Messenger appears to be the cause of Tuesday night's BlackBerry e-mail outage, Research in Motion said in a Wednesday morning statement.

"Root cause is currently under review, but based on preliminary analysis, it currently appears that the issue stemmed from a flaw in two recently released versions of BlackBerry Messenger (versions 5.0.0.55 and 5.0.0.56) that caused an unanticipated database issue within the BlackBerry infrastructure," according to RIM. "RIM has taken corrective action to restore service."

A fix is available for download on the Research In Motion's Blackberry site.

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(AP) E-mail messaging delays plagued BlackBerry users in North America for the second time in a week, though by early Wednesday morning the problems appeared to be resolved for some users.

Research In Motion Ltd. said late Tuesday its technicians were working to resolve e-mail messaging delays on its BlackBerry smart phones in North and South America. A representative could not immediately be reached for comment early Wednesday.

But by Wednesday morning many BlackBerry users posting on the social networking site Twitter reported their BlackBerry service was back to normal.

Tuesday's outage did not seem to affect phone calling and texting services. But users in the Americas were unable to send or receive e-mail messages. Some said they also could not connect to the Internet.

Waterloo, Ontario-based Research in Motion Ltd. in a statement it apologized for any inconvenience experienced by customers.

BlackBerry service last went out last Thursday. At the time, Research In Motion said technicians had isolated and resolved the issue and were investigating the cause of the outages. The company didn't say how many users were affected or how long that outage lasted.

The BlackBerry faces increasing competition from devices such as Apple's iPhone, Palm's Pre and the Motorola Droid. AT&T, in particular, has had had trouble keeping up with wireless data usage of the iPhone, which it carries exclusively in the U.S. Heavy data use by people watching videos and running powerful applications on their devices has led to dropped connections and long waits for users trying to run programs.