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BlackBerry takes Monday afternoon off

Second outage in a year

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BlackBerry users got some time yesterday to smell the flowers and talk to their families and friends - the company's email servers went down just after 3pm Eastern Standard Time.

Full service was not restored until about 11pm, although there was intermittent uptime. Users could not check emails or browse the web. It is likely the outage will have caused a backlog of emails which will take a while to clear.

The outage is the second in less than a year, which won't impress some corporate clients.

The service last went down in April across Canada and the US. That outage was caused by an upgrade to its caching system and the failure of its backup systems.

The worry for BlackBerry is that customers will switch to rival services, especially as there are now several ways to get emails onto a handheld device.

Research in Motion, the company behind the device, sent us the following statement: "BlackBerry data services in the Americas experienced intermittent delays on late Monday afternoon (beginning approximately 3:30 pm eastern). Data service levels were restored in the early evening at approximately 6:30 pm eastern. Voice and SMS services operated normally during this time.

"No messages were lost and message queues began to be cleared after normal service levels were restored. RIM continues to focus on providing industry-leading reliability in its products and services and apologizes to customers for any inconvenience." ®

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