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BlackBerry Outage Hits America; Emails, Phone Calls Affected

BlackBerry’s service platform began to experience outages in Africa, Europe, the Middle East and India Monday, but the problem has now spread across the Atlantic. Outages are now hitting North and South America as of this morning.

BlackBerry Messaging failure and inability to send emails or browse the Internet are posing major problems to Blackberry users around the world.

Some users couldn’t even make phone calls on their BlackBerry.

According to the Washington Post, BlackBerry’s owner, Research in Motion, is unlike other cellphone companies, in that it solely controls email and messaging traffic circulating around the world via one channel, and therefore when a glitch occurs millions are affected.

Americans reported both email losses and intermediate email overloads this morning on the BlackBerry RIM Twitter page.

“BlackBerry subscribers in the Americas may be experiencing intermittent service delays this morning,” RIM reported in a statement.

BlackBerry’s RIM official Twitter account attributes the problem to a switch failure and fails to mention when the problem will be fixed.

“Message delays were caused by a core switch failure in RIM’s infrastructure,” tweeted the BlackBerry Help Center.

RIM contended that the switch outage had been fixed, but warned there could be a potential “backlog” of data surging through the BlackBerry network, which could cause further delays.

Users are unsure if the delays hitting North and South America are due to the backlog or another subsequent problem.

The outage proves untimely, with BlackBerry’s major competitor Apple releasing the iPhone 4S as early as Friday, and Google’s Droid releasing its Ice Cream Sandwich Smartphone in mid-October.

According to the tech blog zdnet.com, this outage has come at an inopportune time for the Waterloo, Ontario, based company, primarily because the company must release the BlackBerry 7 during the competing Apple and Android releases, and RIM relies on emerging markets for profit.

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