A RIM spokesperson confirmed to CNBC that the problem does exist. The spokesperson said, "A limited number of customers have reported an issue where their device does not power on," and that RIM is "actively working on a software update to resolve this issue."
RIM typically distributes software updates through its carrier partners, and the company did not provide a timeframe indicating when the fix might be provided. It is possible that the fix will be available to some variants of the Bold before others. The Bold is sold by AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile USA, and Verizon Wireless in the U.S.
Kevin Michaluk, who runs BlackBerry enthusiast site CrackBerry.com, said of the problem, "Instead of your BlackBerry booting up properly, something goes wrong. You might get a JVM or App Error message, the phone might go into an endless reboot cycle, or occasionally it'll just sit there blinking red lights with the display never really turning on. Whichever way it manifests itself, I consider it nuked or bricked. Until fixed, your BlackBerry is useless. I'm really starting to wonder if BlackBerry 7 has some weird issues that allow it to brick a little easier than it should. I received quite a few tweets where people have also bricked their 9900s. And even on the Crack Team we've seen it happen more than it should."
[ Want to avoid Android App stinkers? See 10 Android App Flops. ]
Thankfully RIM has at least acknowledged the issue and is working to resolve it.
In other RIM news, the company has reduced the price of its 16-GB PlayBook tablet from the standard $499 price to a more palatable and budget-friendly $199. The lower price is available in the U.S. from retailers Best Buy, BlackBerry (Wireless Giant) Stores, Office Depot, Radio Shack, and Wal-Mart. The promotion is available for a limited time, while supplies last. The 32-GB and 64-GB models cost $100 and $200 more, respectively.
RIM has discounted the PlayBook in the past, but hasn't offered such a deep price cut since September. RIM is also still offering business customers three PlayBooks for the price of two--plus reduced prices on select accessories--when purchased through legit business sales channels.
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