Blackberry Platform Failures...

So, now we had it: no Blackberry connections for "millions" of users. Thousands of appointments unconfirmed because of the inability to get this last-minute change of plan out via e-mail, millions of leading executives severely disturbed and seriously troubled as they could not actually do anything on their way to work (a wonderful little account is here).

So what was it? RIM said it related to a disobedient "new, non-critical system routine" that had to be installed (cf. NY Times). Now, non-critical might sound soothing to an engineer. It will give every the overwhelming majority of Blackberry users, all the politicians, lawyers, marketing executives, bankers, etc the jitters: how bad will it actually be if it is critical???

The outage showed the weakness of the otherwise pretty compelling hard/software combination: it seems to contain so much hard-coded "stuff" that it entangles hardware, network and device so closely that one OEM-side error triggers outage across all networks and all devices, and that is not good! But then: according to Nasdaq, this "not good" is "only" worth $1.88 per share - that's how much the shares lost on Thursday.


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