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Verizon BlackBerry glitch casts doubt on iPhone launch

post #1 of 33
Thread Starter 
Though Verizon's executives have emphatically asserted that execution of the upcoming iPhone launch will be flawless, a recent glitch in BlackBerry data traffic on the network could be cause for concern, a new report claims.

Customers on the Verizon Wireless network had reported having trouble connecting to the Internet on a BlackBerry support forum since last Tuesday, Reuters reports.

However, Verizon downplayed the issue. "There is no outage, and there hasn't been one," said spokesman Jeffrey Nelson. "Our engineers discovered that a small number of customers in a limited geographic area had technical glitches that resulted in their email being delayed up to an hour," he said.

According to Nelson, the issue was fully resolved on Tuesday, though he declined to provide details on how many customers were effected and where the glitches occurred. Reports of service trouble were first picked up by The Los Angeles Times, which noted that many of those affected were from California.

Research in Motion, which routes BlackBerry data traffic through its own servers, claimed its service had been operating normally.

News of the BlackBerry glitch comes as Verizon is being closely watched in anticipation of the Feb. 10 launch of the iPhone 4. Analysts and potential customers alike are waiting to see whether Verizon will experience the same network woes that AT&T has undergone since it began carrying the iPhone in 2007.

Intermittent downtime of the Verizon website on the day of the CDMA iPhone announcement drew concern that the carrier, which touts its reputation as a network with excellent service, might not be ready for millions of new iPhone users.

During an earnings call on Tuesday, Verizon executives told investors, "We are not going to have any flaws on the execution of the iPhone launch." According to Chief Financial Officer Francis Shammo, the carrier has invested heavily in its 3G infrastructure in preparation for the iPhone. "We've bulked up our 3G capacity again in advance of our iPhone launch," said Shammo.

The largest wireless network in the US has also hired over 3,000 new customer service representatives and provided extensive training on Apple's products in advance of the highly-anticipated launch.

Verizon sees the "iPhone opportunity" as a potential for growth to "explode over the next several years." The carrier expects smartphone penetration among its customers to reach 50 percent by the end of 2011.

Verizon COO Lowell McAdam confirmed Tuesday that the company's $30-per-month unlimited data plan will be available for the iPhone 4 at launch, but will eventually be phased out. The network will instead switch to a tiered pricing system similar to that of AT&T. Verizon is also offering a $20-per-month tethering plan that allows customers up to 2GB of "personal hotspot" WiFi tethering with up to five devices.

Reports emerged on Wednesday that AT&T has quietly been offering an unlimited data plan to customers who are thinking about switching to Verizon.

AT&T switched to tiered pricing in June of last year. According to the carrier, 98 percent of its smartphone customers use less than 2GB per month.

Though the Verizon iPhone will not go on sale until Feb. 10, Verizon customers eligible for an upgrade can preorder the smartphone on Feb 3. Corporate customers have reportedly received emails informing them that they can begin placing preorders at 3am Eastern.

The preorder launch for the AT&T iPhone 4 last year was a debacle. Sales were temporarily suspended after unprecedented demand overwhelmed AT&T's and Apple's servers. Reports of a security breach also surfaced, with some customers claiming they were being shown information that wasn't theirs.
post #2 of 33
given the interest in the iPhone on the Verizon network, hopefully the company will be able to address, within a reasonable amount of time, the issues that may arise from the increased traffic.
post #3 of 33
the grass isn't always greener.....
post #4 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

"We are not going to have any flaws on the execution of the iPhone launch." According to Chief Financial Officer Francis Shammo

Never say never - may be a hard lesson he will learn.
post #5 of 33
I haven't been able to receive e-mail or access the internet on my Verizon Blackberry since Saturday afternoon. It's now Wednesday. I don't consider the "small" problem resolved at all.

One of the few customers...
post #6 of 33
3,000 new workers? That seems excessive.
post #7 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Damn_Its_Hot View Post

Never say never - may be a hard lesson he will learn.

Agreed. We'll see what happens when the time comes. There was a ship that was claimed unsinkable, but yet it sank on its first voyage.
post #8 of 33
To capture this quote from the report as a rebuttal to all those Android fans who commented in these fora that Verizon would never advertise or make a fuss about the iPhone coming to their network?

Quote:
During an earnings call on Tuesday, Verizon executives told investors, "We are not going to have any flaws on the execution of the iPhone launch." According to Chief Financial Officer Francis Shammo, the carrier has invested heavily in its 3G infrastructure in preparation for the iPhone. "We've bulked up our 3G capacity again in advance of our iPhone launch," said Shammo.

The largest wireless network in the US has also hired over 3,000 new customer service representatives and provided extensive training on Apple's products in advance of the highly-anticipated launch.

Verizon sees the "iPhone opportunity" as a potential for growth to "explode over the next several years." The carrier expects smartphone penetration among its customers to reach 50 percent by the end of 2011.

Nope, between the lack of Verizon iPhone ads and this quote, no one is EVER going to know that the iPhone is on Verizon. Nope, nope, nope!
post #9 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by cjy56 View Post

I haven't been able to receive e-mail or access the internet on my Verizon Blackberry since Saturday afternoon. It's now Wednesday. I don't consider the "small" problem resolved at all.

One of the few customers...

It's a sign. You need to get rid of that crap.
post #10 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by ghostface147 View Post

3,000 new workers? That seems excessive.

How about 3000 new servers?

"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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"Apple should pull the plug on the iPhone."

John C. Dvorak, 2007
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post #11 of 33
Hate to think Verizon is going to shoot itself in the leg. However I wouldn't doubt it either, Once I see the launch, then I'll be convinced that they can handle it. Launching the iphone with unlimited data as well as a personal Hot Spot is really pushing the issue.
By the way, it's going to take a few weeks to evaluate the launch. We should have a better conclusion by the end of March.
post #12 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by LewysBlackmore View Post

To capture this quote from the report as a rebuttal to all those Android fans who commented in these fora...

Please stop using that word. It comes off as at least mildly pretentious. If it served any useful purpose, that would be fine, but "forums" is not only correct, it's noted by virtually every English-language dictionary as the most widely accepted plural form. <End pedantry>
post #13 of 33
I personally have no plans on switching, but I hope the new Verizon iPhone 4 users (whether switchers from AT&T or not) don't have any problems because Verizon's network melts down the way AT&T's did. I also hope the CDMA iPhone 4 doesn't have any problem with dropped calls or reception issues in traditionally problematic areas. If Verizon does suffer a network meltdown at launch or service quality issues with the iPhone 4, I guess it'll be a vindication of sorts for AT&T.

"Be aware of wonder." ~ Robert Fulghum

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"Be aware of wonder." ~ Robert Fulghum

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post #14 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kolchak View Post

...<End pedantry>

Good! We could do with less of that on the fora.
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post #15 of 33
Verizon is totally going to be eating crow on the day of the iPhone pre-order. And then again on the day of the iPhone launch. You heard it here first. Verizon sucks, and they are not even close to being prepared for this event. I mean, let's be honest here -- their website went down on the day that they ANNOUNCED the iPhone, and that was just an ANNOUNCEMENT. What a joke!
post #16 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by scotty321 View Post

Verizon is totally going to be eating crow on the day of the iPhone pre-order. And then again on the day of the iPhone launch. You heard it here first. Verizon sucks, and they are not even close to being prepared for this event. I mean, let's be honest here -- their website went down on the day that they ANNOUNCED the iPhone, and that was just an ANNOUNCEMENT. What a joke!

No... Just No!
"Why iPhone"... Hmmm?
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"Why iPhone"... Hmmm?
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post #17 of 33
This might seem a little far fetched but roll with me for a minute. I've been a Verizon Blackberry customer for the past two years, A Crapberry Storm owner to be exact. Even though I have had it up to here with my phone and can't wait to get the iPhone, what I can say is that my phone's reception and internet has had zero problem's for the last two years that I've had it. It has actually been the only high point of my blackberry experience that i've never had any connection issues except when RIM would have the occasional server issue. But ever since the first day that Verizon's LTE service went live, I rarely ever have full bars on my phone anymore, i'm constantly updating my phone's roaming capability to force it to find towers, and having email and BBM issues. And not just my phone, but my wife's blackberry also. I live in Seattle Washington and this morning I was trying to get on Facebook on the web browser and I was getting an error message to the tune of I didn't have sufficient data to access the site at the time, even though I had full bars.

This is the part that I find funny, I haven't heard of any Android owners complaining of these issues. Could it be that Verizon is kinda purposely screwing with blackberry customers' connections just a tiny bit to get them to give up the platform on their network and buy an iPhone??? Not enough to have them leave Verizon period, but just enough to make them think it's the phone and not the network. In my mind I think it's possible. If they started doing it right when they launched LTE, that would give them a whole two months to do it subtly enough to push the remaining already disgruntled Blackberry owners into hating their phone so much that they believe it was their own idea that they should upgrade.

From what has been being reported lately it sounds like Verizon is kinda fed up with RIM not bringing anything of value to the table. And to add fuel to that, out the the entire line of new Blackberries that have been revealed in the last two weeks, not one of them announced was a CDMA version, they were all GSM.

I don't know, what do you guys think? Am I crazy?
post #18 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by TechManMike View Post

This might seem a little far fetched but roll with me for a minute. I've been a Verizon Blackberry customer for the past two years, A Crapberry Storm owner to be exact. Even though I have had it up to here with my phone and can't wait to get the iPhone, what I can say is that my phone's reception and internet has had zero problem's for the last two years that I've had it. It has actually been the only high point of my blackberry experience that i've never had any connection issues except when RIM would have the occasional server issue. But ever since the first day that Verizon's LTE service went live, I rarely ever have full bars on my phone anymore, i'm constantly updating my phone's roaming capability to force it to find towers, and having email and BBM issues. And not just my phone, but my wife's blackberry also. I live in Seattle Washington and this morning I was trying to get on Facebook on the web browser and I was getting an error message to the tune of I didn't have sufficient data to access the site at the time, even though I had full bars.

This is the part that I find funny, I haven't heard of any Android owners complaining of these issues. Could it be that Verizon is kinda purposely screwing with blackberry customers' connections just a tiny bit to get them to give up the platform on their network and buy an iPhone??? Not enough to have them leave Verizon period, but just enough to make them think it's the phone and not the network. In my mind I think it's possible. If they started doing it right when they launched LTE, that would give them a whole two months to do it subtly enough to push the remaining already disgruntled Blackberry owners into hating their phone so much that they believe it was their own idea that they should upgrade.

From what has been being reported lately it sounds like Verizon is kinda fed up with RIM not bringing anything of value to the table. And to add fuel to that, out the the entire line of new Blackberries that have been revealed in the last two weeks, not one of them announced was a CDMA version, they were all GSM.

I don't know, what do you guys think? Am I crazy?

NO, but somewhat paranoid.

"A common mistake that people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools." Douglas Adams

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"A common mistake that people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools." Douglas Adams

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post #19 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Customers on the Verizon Wireless network had reported having trouble connecting to the Internet on a BlackBerry support forum since last Tuesday, Reuters reports.

maybe it's because they've been trying to connect to the internet on a blackberry support forum. maybe they need to try and connect from some other type of forum?
"Personally, I would like nothing more than to thoroughly proof each and every word of my articles before posting. But I can't."

appleinsider's mike campbell, august 15, 2013
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"Personally, I would like nothing more than to thoroughly proof each and every word of my articles before posting. But I can't."

appleinsider's mike campbell, august 15, 2013
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post #20 of 33
For all of you having trouble with your Blackberry (and all others, too), watch this.....

http://www.flixxy.com/my-blackberry-is-not-working.htm
post #21 of 33
Someone is really reaching for a story here. Verizon had some BB technical issues (no mention of Android or other operating systems/phones), therefore the iPhone launch is in "doubt".

A bit sensationalist, don't you think?
post #22 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by cjy56 View Post

I haven't been able to receive e-mail or access the internet on my Verizon Blackberry since Saturday afternoon. It's now Wednesday. I don't consider the "small" problem resolved at all.

One of the few customers...

I've been receiving some emails up to 15 hours late recently. Most have been on time to a couple hours late, though. And I'm most definitely not in SoCal, either. Whether it's RIM's issue or VZW's issue, I don't know and apparently AI doesn't either (though they thought it was *newsworthy* enough to write an article).
post #23 of 33
Blackberry is Blackberry. I havent gotten all of my facebook notifications in over a month or so. Some come in, some don't. E-mail is fine, though, and has been. I haven't experienced an outage. I think it has more to do with the Blackberry server than it does the network.
post #24 of 33
But... but... Verizon is great and AT&T sucks, right? What am I to believe now? AppleInsider, you toy with my allegiances...!
post #25 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by ghostface147 View Post

3,000 new workers? That seems excessive.

What if it isn't excessive? If 1 million new customers show up the first week, that's a lot of potential signup issues, and after signup, 1% make a support call in the first week, that's 10,000 support calls, and those numbers may turn out to be very conservative. Switching devices and carriers is probably the single most disruptive part of owning a phone, and it may require some help.

It's probably a good investment given how Verizon might not want to have their collective foot in their mouth after mocking AT&T's iPhone signup issues. I'm interested in seeing how it plays out.
post #26 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by scotty321 View Post

Verizon is totally going to be eating crow on the day of the iPhone pre-order. And then again on the day of the iPhone launch. You heard it here first. Verizon sucks, and they are not even close to being prepared for this event. I mean, let's be honest here -- their website went down on the day that they ANNOUNCED the iPhone, and that was just an ANNOUNCEMENT. What a joke!

Well in VZ's defense, their websites aren't connected in any way to their cell network. However I do agree that they should leave the smack talking until after the launch. Their boastful comments could come back to haunt them. No matter how prepared they think they are, simulated tests aren't the same as millions of iPhones hitting their network.
post #27 of 33
I wonder if Verizon is more comfortable with its network handling the new Iphone surge is. Because it has been updating it cell sites to handle LTE. But right now it has a small window in the upgrading process, as there very few LTE's on the system yet?

I being a Verizon guy all the way back to the Airtouch days. I tried At&t but they are only edge network where I live. I think that At&t IS better in many ways. One is if I'm in a building, the GSMs have done a better job in my circles. I hate to hear Verizon say that it will not fail. I hope that they are right. But sounds like famous last words to me. I think that they ARE going to have troubles and people are ready (and wanting) to pounce.
post #28 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by sidste View Post

Someone is really reaching for a story here.

Agreed. This article is absolute FUD.
post #29 of 33
Verizon is pretty bold for saying they're not going to have any network problems. iPhone users are notorious data hogs, myself included. I can just see the news coverage now.
post #30 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by Realistic View Post

NO, but somewhat paranoid.

That's what they want him to think....
post #31 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by TechManMike View Post

This might seem a little far fetched but roll with me for a minute. I've been a Verizon Blackberry customer for the past two years, A Crapberry Storm owner to be exact. Even though I have had it up to here with my phone and can't wait to get the iPhone, what I can say is that my phone's reception and internet has had zero problem's for the last two years that I've had it. I.... But ever since the first day that Verizon's LTE service went live, I rarely ever have full bars on my phone anymore, ... I haven't heard of any Android owners complaining of these issues. Could it be that Verizon is kinda purposely screwing with blackberry customers' connections just a tiny bit to get them to give up the platform on their network and buy an iPhone??? Not enough to have them leave Verizon period, but just enough to make them think it's the phone and not the network....it sounds like Verizon is kinda fed up with RIM not bringing anything of value to the table. And to add fuel to that, out the the entire line of new Blackberries that have been revealed in the last two weeks, not one of them announced was a CDMA version, they were all GSM.

I don't know, what do you guys think? Am I crazy?

When I read the article, this is what I was thinking too, lol. I don't think you are crazy or paranoid...just upgrade your phone, and be happy.
post #32 of 33
I love AI, but this article is really reaching...

1) All internet browsing on Blackberry devices goes through the RIM data centers and through the specialized RIM equipment connected into VZ's network. Considering only blackberry phones are affected, clearly this is a RIM <--> VZW equipment or connection problem and wouldn't affect iPhones.

2) If the idea was to show that every cellular company (including Verizon and AT&) experiences small outages and network difficulties from time to time, I don't think that is news to anyone.

The problem with AT&T and the reason they catch so much flack is because their network has been totally maxed out in many urban areas (which is probably at least partially a problem with the limits of available WCDMA/UMTS bandwidth which they can't do anything about, although it seems they are limited by backhaul and tower volume in many areas --- LTE should help a lot with this), and they don't have 3G coverage in many rural and suburban areas compared to Verizon.
post #33 of 33
I am not suggesting that Verizon will have any problems during the iPhone launch but, for my own experience running my own businesses, it is always better to under-promise and over-deliver.
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