UAE mobile phone service providers will compensate BlackBerry users in the country for the service disruption and the offer could include a period of free use.
Du announced that it has decided to compensate customers in the following manner:
Individual BlackBerry users:
3 days free service for all existing Blackberry subscribers as follows:
BlackBerry Social (Prepaid) = 1.5 x 3 days = Dh4.5
BlackBerry Social (Postpaid) = 1 x 3days = Dh3
Unlimited National BlackBerry service (Post and Pre) = 4.33 x 3 = Dh13
Unlimited international BlackBerry service (Post and Pre) = 8.66 x 3 = Dh26
The free credit will also be applicable for BlackBerry customers enjoying free BlackBerry service (under the 6 months offer).
Enterprise BlackBerry users:
3 days free service for all existing Blackberry subscribers – consumers and business.
For both individual and enterprise customers, free credit will be added in the customers’ bills (for Postpaid) or in the More time balance account for prepaid users. Postpaid customers will receive the credit on their next bill, while Prepaid users will receive the credit within the next 3 days.
Etisalat, too has announced that it will compensate its BlackBerry users by providing a three-day free usage to both pre-paid and post-paid customers.
Prepaid customers will receive the equivalent of three days usage, free-of-charge and credited to their account within 24 hours, while for postpaid customers, this will be adjusted in their monthly bill.
Matthew Willsher, Chief Marketing Officer , etisalat said: "Our partner RIM is working on resolving the issue currently impacting users. Keeping our customers satisfied is a priority for us and given the exceptional and unprecedented circumstances, we are compensating our BlackBerry users to demonstrate our care for their loyal and ongoing custom."
It had been negotiating with Blackberry makers, Research in Motion (RIM) of Canada, on the package to be offered to the more than 500,000 Blackberry subscribers to make up for loss of services, it said.
Etisalat sent out tweets and SMSes this morning informing its subscribers: “RIM problems are affecting BlackBerry customers again today. The problem is global. RIM is working to fix the problem."
The problem started in the afternoon although some users said they have been experiencing some sort of glitches since Tuesday morning.
Farid Faraidooni, du’s Chief Commercial Officer, was earlier quoted as saying: “The proposed compensation will be shouldered by RIM since the service failure has nothing to do with Du or Etisalat networks, which are operating efficiently.”
4 continents hit
A series of failures in Research In Motion's (RIM) private network has disrupted BlackBerry service to millions of customers across four continents.
Extensive delays hit Europe, the Middle East, Africa and India on Monday and the problems spread to Brazil, Chile and Argentina on Tuesday, Reuters reported.
"The messaging and browsing delays being experienced... were caused by a core switch failure within RIM's infrastructure," the company said in a emailed update late on Tuesday afternoon in Toronto.
UAE users unhappy
Meanwhile, BlackBerry users in the UAE continued to experience service disruptions on Tuesday afternoon till evening, even after services were partially restored on Monday after a seven-hour outage.
A BlackBerry employee at Gitex Technology Week this afternoon confirmed that the service was fully restored in the UAE but refused to specify what had caused the problem.
“The technical team has rectified the issue,” the employee who did not want to be identified told 'Emirates 24|7.'
Research in Motion (RIM) makers of BlackBerry on Monday had claimed that the services had been restored and were operating normally.
But early Tuesday afternoon, once again Twitter was active with updates about the latest outage.
“I subscribe to du and my BBM service was restored on Monday morning. But I started having problems again from this afternoon. It is a bit irritating,” said K Rony, a sales executive in Dubai.
Disruptions in Europe, Middle East, Latin America and Africa
Associated Press reported that BlackBerry users across Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Brazil, Chile, and Argentina were hit with service disruptions to their smartphones for a second day after an unexplained glitch cut off Internet and messaging services for large numbers of users around the world.
BlackBerry's maker says smartphone users in Latin America and India also are also experiencing problems with messaging and browsing services.
Research in Motion (RIM), which makes BlackBerry devices, acknowledged there were ongoing issues on Tuesday, hours after it said services were operating normally and the issue responsible for delays in subscriber services a day earlier had been resolved.
"Some areas have messaging delays and impaired browsing," Blackberry said on Twitter, adding it was working to "restore normal service as quickly as possible."
In Britain, Vodafone UK told customers via Twitter that service was not fully restored. Rival T-Mobile UK blamed "a European-wide outage on the BlackBerry network" which it said was affecting all mobile operators. There were also reports of problems elsewhere in Europe, such as Spain.
And Kenya's Safaricom Ltd. said on Twitter that its Blackberry customers were experiencing a "technical fault," while South Africa's Vodacom told subscribers the issues were affecting multiple networks and countries.
There were no reports of any problems in the US.
Angry smartphone users also used Twitter to vent frustration with the company and bemoaned the loss of their messaging capabilities, questioning why the company took so long to restore services.