Is Blackberry down?

I had to smile seeing this website however I doubt RIM’s PR or Legal teams shared my humour. has now become (I suspect after a call from someone at Research in Motion)

The website has been setup to let people know when the Blackberry Services is Down or Up.

Following the recent number of outages it seems that someone has deemed it necessary to create such a site.

Of course you’ll probably have to sign up with another email address than the one on your Blackberry device otherwise if the service is down you won’t get it.  Since the last few outages I’m surprised that RIM themselves haven’t been more proactive in addressing this as many customer I’ve spoken to have stated that these outages have really rocked people’s perception of the stability of Blackberry. 

The website claims 99.8% uptime for the RIM service which is still 17hrs of outage for the year and a long way behind the 4 and 5 9’s uptime most organisations measure themselves against.

Five nines = 99.999% = 5 minutes 35 seconds downtime a year

Four nines = 99.99% = 52 minutes 33 seconds downtime a year

Comments (15)
  1. Jonathan says:

    Yeah, I won’t mention how many times a day my Windows Mobile device crashes though.

  2. Arno says:

    Ask yourself why is crashes… any third party apps that might be the cause? maybe the device needs swapping out? I only reset my device every 2 weeks just because i think it might need a reset.

  3. anothergoodguy says:

    The website has nothing to do with device crashes…rather RIM’s NOC (service) going down. When the NOC goes down customers stop receiving email on their device.

    So here’s some food for thought,  may bring  a smile to your face, but the folks in Waterloo are still grinning ear to ear. Sure the  uptime statistics took a hit..but RIM has over 10.5 million subscribers today and adds another 1.2 million new users every quarter….

  4. MSDN Archive says:

    Jonathan – you shouldn’t have your device crashing – what device are you using?   (at least you can reset your device if you do have problems – you can’t reset RIM’s NOC)

    anothergoodguy – 10.5 million subscribers isn’t very many when you consider that there are 540 million email users worldwide (and 130 million of those use Exchange)  

  5. Jerry says:

    I agreed with Jonathan and no matter what device is it, it will crash even without third party sw installed. I’m gettin frustrated with all those support and experienced professional blaming third party sw for the culprit.

    Jonathan, how about the signal lost when we are in the tunnel or site which dont have GPRS coverage and the device just never re-connect after we come out from the tunnel. Worst come to worst, soft-reset to get it back…how to exactly measure this downtime to push email compared to blackberry, huh ?

    Buck up and stop blaming operator, vendor or third party sw

  6. Jonathan says:

    Jerry agree with your sentiments exactly.

    I am actually a mobility architect in a very large environment where we deploy both solutions. I can tell you hands down in terms of supportability and TCO in our environment, the Blackberry outages we’ve seen do not come anywhere near to the amount of downtime and support issues we’ve had with our WM5 fleet.

    Blackberrys just hum away and do their thing. They don’t need resetting constantly and out of the box we manage them with policies OTA and deploy them OTA. We see them come back when they’re at the end of their life, or they need to be re-deployed to new users.

    On our WM fleet, the devices lock up, EVERYTHING requires another piece of middleware. The device lifecycle is so short and geared to consumers that we are forever updating accessories.

    We are now actively investigating the retirement of the entire fleet and the standardisation on BB. We will look at maintaining WM only where LOB apps cannot be immediately moved.

    Here’s a sobering fact. I’ve read MS’ commissioned reports on TCO and they’re inconsistent with our real world results. Our WM environment costs us roughly twice our BB environment does per device.

    That being said, I run two devices at any given time a BB and a WM. I love my Pearl and my Dopod S301. However the dopod points into Plaxo and GMail and doesn’t have to interface into the corporate environment and I am happy to manage everything myself.

  7. Jerry says:

    I’m not saying WM is no good…but the things is MS need to stand up and speak up to repair all the existing problem and not keep quiet over user feedback and keep on laughing of other technology’s minor problem.

    For me, WM is long way off from beating blackberry and I really hoping to see one day WM really have the stability and greater technology to compete with blackberry.

  8. Jerry says:

    Just to add additional comment on push email and blackberry outage:

    Windows mobile have the potential problem in device crash, device’s network connectivity lost,  complicated roaming selection, server crash …

    Blackberry only have potential problem of server unavailability which is very rare to encounter…I have never see any blackberry device crash, lost connectivity, and more importantly, nothing needed to be done when user roam…

    So, the decision is ? You should know….

  9. MSDN Archive says:

    Jerry – sorry but I have to disagree with you – Blackberry has the same complications as Windows Mobile PLUS it also has a NOC in between you and your data.  You still have to have Exchange to use Blackberry so you have the added complication of Blackberry Enterprise Server and the NOC to consider.  With Exchange you just have Exchange.

    Jonathan – feel free to email me via the contact section of my site… I’d love to know more about your instability and TCO with Windows Mobile – there is no way it should be as painful as you are experiencing… our research included 250 customers that ran WM and RIM estates so hopefully you are the exception not the rule.

  10. Jerry says:

    Jason – That’s only the backend point of view…for a corporate support, I had to say end user experience is the most important as they wouldn’t care what’s the backend looks like…pls review back my previous msg and you would a lot of problem happening in WM but not blackberry.

    I’m hoping ms take it and do the works instead of keeping quiet on it…this makes no good to MS but it will driving all the customer far away.

    At the time of writing, my device lost connection to the server again and i have to disable the network connectivity and reconect. How do we expect a businessman always monitor the device’s sync status to ensure it back running.

    I have also encountered a situation whereby the ISA and Exchange 2003 working fine but the device just show waiting for network for no reason even the device able to browse website!

    Seriously, no 3rd party sw and only a plain WM6…………..

  11. Jack says:

    I’m also a mobility guy who handle push email issue in wm5. I agreed with Jonathan, the support issue in wm5 are very much greater than blackberry as user only come back when the device is on the end of life or new deployment.

    Users does come back with a lot of wm5 issue, certificate missing when removed sim/battery, date and time reset resulted certificate lost, device failed to perform roaming in other country, unable to re-establish the gprs connection, RNDIS issue(some of the device dont have USB to PC).

    Dont get me wrong, I’m a WM fan and i really hope MS take this seriously and come out with a more stability wm OS. But to be honest MS will definitely losing a lot of fan due to the above problem as its really frustrating.

  12. Jerry says:

    Jasonlan- do u have answers to Jack and my comment  ?

  13. MSDN Archive says:

    Sorry Jerry/Jack – I’ve been on vacation

    Jerry – the problems you are having sound like they are mainly due to data connectivity (particularly if you cannot connect to the Internet at all) – I’ve seen this before and there is a lot of work that can be done here to address these.  

    Jack – On your issues – the certificate missing sounds like a serious one and something I know that was addressed in late releases of WM5 as well as WM6.  On the RNDIS issue – this is typically addressed by switching back to Serial mode (if you don’t have time to troubleshoot why those particular ports are being blocked) On the GPRS connectivity – I’d love to know what devices and operator you are using – it may be that the preferred operators aren’t setup correctly.

    Drop me an email directly if you want me to help more.

  14. Arno says:

    I don’t know if you guys will be reading this.

    I also had the issue with connectivity, and the device waiting for network…

    This turned out to be users with only some of the needed features enabled on the SIM card.

    With the needed features enabled i never had this problem again. gprs, internet and wap needs to be enabled on my providor for the best coverage.

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