Canadian BlackBerry users report network outage

Users of older BlackBerry handsets in Canada today reported what appears to be a network outage preventing them from sending and receiving messages as well as accessing mobile services.

However, a BlackBerry spokesperson said the problem actually covers a wider area.

“We can confirm that a service issue is impacting some users in Canada and the Asia Pacific region,” said Lisette Kwong, senior manager of corporate communications for BlackBerry in an email. “Our technical team has identified the potential cause of the issue and has reduced its impact on customers’ service.”

The issue began sometime around 9 a.m. today, according to, a Web site that monitors and tracks the performance of various services in the mobile, Internet provider, airlines and public transport spaces.


“Because all data traffic is routed through BlackBerry’s servers, there have previously been incidents where a BlackBerry server outage would cause a blackout of e-mail, Internet and ping messaging services,” according to Canadianoutages.

The site also broke down the types of service difficulties experienced users were complaining about:

  • Send/receive messaged (74 per cent)
  • BlackBerry messenger (23 per cent)
  • Ping (2 per cent)

The outage is believed to have affected the BlackBerry Internet Services and is limited to devices running on operating systems older than the BlackBerry 10 such as the BlackBerry Bold 9900 smart phone.

Later versions of the OS are not affected since they do not compress all mobile traffic through BlackBerry networks.

“…BB10 devices (Z10, Z30, Q10, Q5) are not affected by this outage due to the fact that they don’t use the BlackBerry infrastructure (BIS). Only legacy devices are affected,” according to a comment posted on the Canadianoutages site posted by Bill Johnston

“BlackBerry outage in 3 – 4 provinces, blackberry users report email and messaging outage,” Tweeted @BrettsBane

Posts on Twitter show complains about the interruptions from British Columbia, Manitoba, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Ontario and Quebec.

Kwong said the BlackBerry team is working towards a full resolution of the problem as quickly as possible.

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Nestor E. Arellano
Nestor E. Arellano
Toronto-based journalist specializing in technology and business news. Blogs and tweets on the latest tech trends and gadgets.

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